Workplace Bullying Defined
The Workplace Bullying Institute (WBI) defines “workplace bullying” as “repeated, health-harming mistreatment of one or more persons (the targets) by one or more perpetrators that take one or more of the following forms”:
· Verbal abuse.
· Offensive conduct or behaviors, including nonverbal, that are threatening, humiliating or intimidating.
· Work interference—sabotage—that prevents work from getting done.
Among other things, this definition could encompass such actions as having work product criticized constantly, yelling, being reminded constantly of past mistakes, spreading rumors or lies and being avoided or excluded intentionally.
When evaluating complaints, it’s important to look at the big picture. Repeated mistreatment is a key element of the WBI definition of workplace bullying. Bullying isn’t a one-time altercation. Rather, it is persistent harassment or abuse. Another key element of the definition is that the mistreatment must cause harm to the target’s health. If you have an office bully on your hands, or are a victim of bullying, it’s important to discuss this with your office Human Resources office. If you need further help to process and release negativity, you may call me for a complimentary consult. I see individuals and small groups on Long Island, conduct video skype sessions and do onsite trainings and education.