The experience of workplace bullying differs in some ways from other bullying  because  most organisations today have in place systems which they believe deal with such matters and are well documented and implemented. However, since most organisations will deal with bullying as conflict instead of the serious abuse it actually is, most victims of workplace bullying are not receiving the help and support to which they are entitled. Most organisations will request or require their employees to enter a conflict or dispute resolution process once the issue of bullying has been identified. This means that both parties are seen to be equally culpable and therefore in need of a third party to help them resolve their ‘differences’. This approach is inappropriate since bullying is not about ‘conflict’. Bullying is about abuse. It is not appropriate to attempt to negotiate improved relations between an abuser and their victim. The victim requires protection and support . The abuser needs to be cautioned and denied access to their victim. This rarely happens, however.  ‘Mediation’ may be offered but this   again assumes that each party will give some ground in order to resolve the issue.

Victims of abuse in the form of workplace bullying should be very clear about what is happening to them and be firm in their determination to have the bully  made aware of their inappropriate and unacceptable behaviour. This is further exacerbated when there are a number of personnel involved in the bullying or abuse and they support each other in denying or diminishing what has been occuring.

See the links below to find out more and watch this space for further articles, quizzes and contacts for support with workplace bullying.

  • What we know about workplace bullying
  • What we know about Bullies at work