We all know that bullying at school is a very serious issue that can have dreadful consequences on a child’s life, but bullying in the workplace is an equally serious issue that should not be overlooked. Workplace bullying can lead to depression, anxiety, or different stress-related health problems.
If your employer or a coworker is constantly intimidating you, criticizing you, insulting you or spreading lies about you, you need to stand up for yourself and to find a way to resolve this difficult situation. Here are a few tips to help you deal with workplace bullying.
Don’t blame yourself
First, you should keep in mind that being a victim of bullying is not something you should be blaming yourself for. The bullying is the bully’s fault, not your own. Do not lose your confidence or question your competences.
Try to confront the bully
Confronting a bully is difficult, but in some cases, it can help change the situation. You can tell the bully that his behavior is unacceptable, and that you will not put up with it in the future. Simply calling out the bully on his actions could make him rethink his behavior.
Get support from coworkers
You should not let the actions of the bully push you into isolating yourself from your coworkers. Work on building good relationships with them, and ask for their support. Support from other employees will not make the bully disappear, but should make you less of an easy target.
You should keep a journal to document the time, the date and the details of each time you are being bullied. If one of your coworkers is a witness of a bullying incident, take note of it. If you ever receive intimidating emails, keep them.
All this information will be useful to you if you need to ask for help to solve the issue. It could even serve as evidence that the bully is not only hurting your feelings and your dignity, but that he is also having a negative impact on the success of the company you are working for.
Ask for help
You should tell your employer about the bullying, and ask for help to resolve the situation. If your boss chooses to disregard the situation, or is taking part in the bullying, you should go to Human Resources for help. If Human Resources fails to resolve the problem even after you have showed them clear evidence of the bullying, you should think about seeking legal advice.
Seek help from an employment lawyer
If your employer decides to overlook the bullying, and if Human Resources fails to help you, you should seek the help of an employment lawyer. An employment lawyer who specializes in personal harassment or bullying will be able to provide you with legal advice, and to guide you through different options and different steps you can take to protect your rights and to solve the problematic situation once and for all.