Workplace Bullying

Workplace bullying refers to repeated, unreasonable actions of individuals (or a group) directed towards an employee (or a group of employees), which is intended to intimidate and creates a risk to the health and safety of the employee(s).
Workplace bullying often involves an abuse or misuse of power.

Bullying includes behavior that intimidates, degrades, offends, or humiliates a worker, often in front of others.

• Bullying is different from aggression. Aggression may involve a single act, bullying involves repeated acts. Bullying situations can involve employees to coworkers, employees to supervisors or supervisors to employees.


• Unwarranted or invalid criticism.
• Blame without factual justification.
• Being treated differently than the rest of your work group.
• Being sworn at.
• Exclusion or social isolation.
• Being shouted at or being humiliated.
• Being the target of practical jokes.
• Excessive monitoring

Many of us may have thought bullying ended in the schoolyard, but it is being recognized in the corporate world too. And like any form of disrespect, it is inappropriate in the workplace.

Bullying in the workplace can take many forms.

Being yelled at, called names or made to feel less than others are all forms of bullying. Being given discipline for trivial reasons or made up ones on a regular basis is a form of bullying.
Constant attempts to undermine your status, value, position and potential is bullying. Even being put down or patronized constantly - especially in front of others - is bullying. There are certain things you have to remember when dealing with a bully in the workplace:

START TO GAIN CONTROL BACK.

Recognize that you are being bullied.
There's no shame in it, it is not your fault.
Criticisms from a bully are intended to put you down and to make you second guess yourself.
Don't give in to these fears.
If you know you're producing work of a high standard and your manager has no complaints, then don't worry about it.


YOU ARE NOT ALONE.

Do not let the bully make you feel shame, guilt or fear. This is what bullies rely on to keep their hold over you. Guilt and fear strategies are the bully's best friend.

DON'T TRY TO HANDLE BULLYING ALONE.

Bullies pick on those who are afraid to tell others of the problem. It's important to remember there's no shame in asking for help. A bully will try hard to make you feel inadequate and belittle you, making you believe that asking for help and not being able to deal with the problem on your own is cowardly. Tell a coworker at the very least—preferably your supervisor, if you can. Bullying is harassment and the Postal Service is working hard to address this problem. 

TAKE ACTION AGAINST THE BULLY.


Keep a written account of the bullying incidents. Write in great detail what happened and where, including times and dates, and share this information with your supervisor. 
If you need further help resolving a disrespect issue such as bullying, contact a supervisor or Human Resources. If you feel it involves illegal behavior such as harassment or discrimination, you can call the EEO number found on posters in your facility.
Read the EEO poster—it contains valuable information on the EEO process.

If you need support in dealing with a bullying or similar situation, contact your Employee Assistance Program and they will help you through the process.
1-800-327-4968 TTY 1-877-492-7341 
This article was written and approved by Your District EAP Advisory Committee (a committee made up of craft, management and EAP representatives who work together in promoting the EAP.)

 

 

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