Stress and bullying go hand in hand…
We might have thought bullying was one of those things we endure as kids, but it is no coincidence that during a recession and season of budgets cuts, bullying has taken a serious foothold in schools and in the workplace. Stressful situations breed bullies as it triggers insecurity and the need to have absolute control in these stressful environments. Ironically, the last thing a stressful situation needs is a bully who brings more stress to the environment.
Bullies bring emotional and psychological attacks to staff who then spend time fending off the threat, instead of time focusing on being productive. Why then don’t organizations crack down on bullies if they are so destructive?
1. Bullies are often the boss, welding control, even threatening targets with demotion or job loss if they don’t comply with
2. Organizations often protect their management, even when management is wrong, therefore targets subordinates quietly suffer and plan an escape instead of addressing the problem.
3. Staff often makes excuses: there is not enough time, or not enough energy to address the toxic personality.
Patricia Berkly LLC offers some organizational solutions to help everyone maintain a healthy work environment. The time spent to put protective measures in place will help to maintain quality and productive employees.
1. Establish a culture of zero tolerance with strong anti-bullying policies. Be clear about what behavior is acceptable and the steps the organization will take to protect itself from a bully
2. Follow that policy. Too often organizations craft wonderful policies, yet fail to follow them, or apply them inconsistently.
3. Offer regular and consistent training. With natural attrition, any staff needs training. Such training will also empower staff as a whole to address bullying as the grassroots level.
4. Establish information interviews with staff as a standard operating procedure. In addition to other aspects of the operation
which need attention, this standard procedure could also uncover incivility in your workplace.
Protecting your organization from bullying is everyone’s responsibility. For more information, visit Leah Hollis, the President
and Founder of Patricia Berkly LLC a diversity training and consulting group. Dr. Hollis has conducted several lectures and
assisted clients with this issue. Her group is at www.diversitytrainingconsultants.com –