Workplace Bullying definition

Workplace bullying is very hard to define because it can occur within unique situations. In general it is unreasonable or aggressive behaviour aimed at a specific group or individual, performed persistently and with power disparity between the bully and the victim.

Bullying at work can take many different forms – consistently unreasonable expectations from managers, destabilisation, undermining integrity and confidence, false accusations, sabotage and shunning are just a few.

People perceive behaviour differently so what is an ‘in-joke’ to one person may be persistent bullying to another.

Companies must have processes in place to deal with workplace bullying and managers must not stand by and ignore the issue as this can lead to severe fissures throughout the workforce. Workers must be able to talk to appropriate parties about workplace bullying, including bullying involving other people – this involves having a strong whistleblowing policy in place.

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