It was 6pm already, Tola was still buried in work she looked around and the office was empty, all her colleagues had left; it has become a norm to leave her with all the work it was after all everyone believed “tola will do it ” , it was so bad that now she was queried if any task was left undone whether it was given to her or not, she felt a sudden pain in her chest, this pain had been reoccurring, alone in the office she prayed it was not a heart attack?
Research shows that about 45% of individuals targeted by bullies at work suffer stress-related health problems which could include cardiovascular problems, impaired immune system, debilitating anxiety and even post-traumatic stress disorder.
Office bullying is simply mistreatment severe enough to compromise a targeted worker’s health, jeopardize her or his job and career, and strain relationships with friends and family. It is sad because most times office bullying has nothing to do with work itself. It is driven by the bully’s personal agenda and actually prevents work from getting done. It begins with one person singling out the target. Before long, the bully easily and swiftly recruits others to gang up on the target, where they tease and victimize the person increasing the sense of isolation.
Office bulling occurs in in 3 dimensions.
a) Employer bullying: This is when your boss or owner of business, is the perpetrator of the bullying, and if you can gather evidence you should sue, in counties like Nigeria you may have to endure and pray most times lol.
b) Co-workers bullying: This is when your Colleagues or subordinate pick on you.
c) Client bullying: The client is always right blah blah, sometimes gets client who bully companies paid to do business for them, in some cases some even go as far as demanding sexual favours etc. Whichever ship you find yourself in, never fear, here are some helpful tips on how to tackle bullying in the workplace.
1) Rediscover your self: many times when we start working, we lose our selves, either from yielding to work pressures, trying to please the boss or coworkers, so you need to take a day off and get a list of things you like, things you hate people doing to you at the office, get that list, and become self aware, again you will discover you have either been too friendly or always available or you have sold your self short making your self an easy target to be bullies, so like they say it is time to grow your self a set of balls.
2) Under study your coworkers who are not getting bullied, investigate and discover their schedule, how they avoid been bullied or getting extra work, it could be i have a doctors appointment, to a medical condition, get one.
3) Set boundaries and say no: people who say no do not get bullied, learn to say no in an accretive tone, this would help you stop been the one who takes it all, start it with the little guys then work your way up.
4) Get an ally: wolves always move in a packs, and this increases your chances of been able to stand your ground better, you must have something someone wants, and your ally must be a boss so your loyalties to him would keep others aback, and ensure that is the only person you do favors for is the boss and no one else. let them start to say the changes.
5) Gather evidence: from recording conversations with your mobile device, or a video and playing back to say the tone of your voice this morning when we spoke is un acceptable will help drive home your message,also you can use the evidence to make an official case against the bully, because evidence will win you any case when presented to your HR unit.
6) Get confrontational: after implementing all this rules over the weeks as the bullies are still trying to adjust call them out privately and have a talk with them, you would need eye contact for this talk,tell the bully what you hate about the way they treat you and categorically state what behavior you will not put up with in the future.
7) Call them out in public: if after the private talk the bully tries to continue, then you need to call them out in public, at a meeting, If the bully is talking over you with complaints and criticisms, ask him a direct question about what he recommends instead, become more direct and dogged in you approach towards him.
If you fail to plan, you plan to fail so ensure all this rules are followed, and well executed it is important to remain calm and honest throughout maintain composure, because bullies never stop on till they are confronted.
Have you ever been bullied at work? How did you handle the situation? Let us know in the comments!