In the past, bullying was something only heard about in school settings, or similar places where children gathered. However, today, this has changed significantly. Now, everyone, regardless of age, gender, or class, can be a victim.
Unfortunately, many people don’t even know the signs of bullying in the workplace, but this is something that happens almost every day, all across the country. Keep reading to learn about some of the tell-tale signs that a person is being bullied at work.
The Bullying Epidemic
According to information from a national survey, up to 27 percent of respondents have been a victim of workplace bullying. While this is true, at what point does bullying go from being disrespectful to lawsuit worthy? Getting to know the rights an employee has is important and an employees rights advocate can help with this.
Another important step is to know the signs of bullying. If they are seen, contacting the HR department or an attorney is a smart move.
Are other people in the office or workplace receiving preferential treatment? Some examples of this include travel perks, “cherry” projects, flextime, and more. In most cases, one employee is going to make similar requests that others do, but theirs are denied without any plausible explanation.
Goals Change and Progress Disregarded
Let’s say a person is given a directive with specific objectives, as well as an end goal and timeline. They work hard and remain focused only to discover there’s a change in the direction of the project. The progress that has been made is not applied to the new goals or celebrated and it isn’t even taken into account.
When an employee is subjected to abusive, negative language, this is a clear sign of workplace bullying. Examples of this include being shouted or sworn at on a regular basis. With this in mind, verbal abuse is often subtle, as well, including reprimands and insults.
Sometimes, employees may feel as though they are being joked with, but they still feel uncomfortable. This is also considered a type of verbal bullying.
Believe it or not, bullying can also come in the form of roadblocks. These may be thrown up in front of a person, throwing them off course and preventing them from successfully completing an initiative or project.
How to Handle Workplace Bullying
Not all cases of workplace bullying are considered illegal. However, if a person feels as though their rights have been violated, then filing a lawsuit may be a viable option. The best way to know for sure is by speaking with an attorney.
Some other options a person has is to know their rights, as many states have anti-bullying laws in place. An employee can also speak with the HR department at their workplace, and as a last resort they can find a new job.
Stand Up for Workplace Rights
Each person, regardless of what industry they work in, deserve to be treated with respect. If bullying occurs, they have options. Getting to know the signs, and taking action when appropriate, is the best way to handle workplace bullying and stop it from happening in the future. Being informed is the absolute best way to handle these types of situations.