We support the workplace anti-bullying campaign!
Bullying in the workplace is gaining attention as workplaces become increasingly diverse, attitudes about acceptable behaviour change and the direct and indirect costs of bullying are identified. The Canada Safety Council estimates that bullied employees spend 10 to 52% of their time networking for support. At the same time, workplace bullying creates conflict and chronic unresolved conflict is a decisive factor in 50% of employee departures.
What is workplace bullying?
“Workplace bullying is a repeated pattern of behaviour intended to intimidate, offend, degrade or humiliate a particular person or group—the bully’s target. Although it can include physical abuse or the threat of abuse, bullying usually causes psychological rather than physical harm.”
What’s the difference between bullying and a strong management style?
Strong managers rely on consistency, fairness, responsibility and respect; they put the interests of the organization first, while offering objective comments and constructive feedback to motivate their employees.
Bulling managers try to hide their own inadequacy, claiming they are trying to encourage better performance. In fact, bullying causes under-performance (or makes it worse) because it distracts employees from their duties.
We can discourage bullying in our workplaces by:
- start by becoming aware of the problem
- encourage everyone to treat each other in a respectful and professional manner
- work out solutions before situations become serious
- treat all complaints seriously and dealing with them promptly and confidentially
- train supervisors, managers and staff to deal effectively with complaints and address issues promptly, whether or not a formal complaint has been filed
Sources for tips and tools:
The Ontario Ministry of Labour website has many resources available to help workplaces address these issues: http://www.ccohs.ca/oshanswers/psychosocial/bullying.html
Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS): https://www.labour.gov.on.ca/english/hs/topics/workplaceviolence.php