What To Do If You’re A Victim Of Workplace Bullying

Bullying, harassment, and discrimination in the workplace can make you feel helpless as if no one is on your side. This, however, is not the case. Tolerance or promotion of these toxic behaviours in the workplace, rather than establishing inclusive and safe settings, is unethical.  At work, no employee has the right to be bullied, harassed, or discriminated against.

What Is Classed As Bullying?

Bullying and harassment in the workplace are characterized as repeated and unreasonable behaviour directed towards an employee, management, or customer by other staff in the workplace, that creates a risk to health and safety. Bullying may take numerous forms and create both short- and long-term psychological and physical harm. Identifying indications of bullying is critical to preventing the problem from worsening. Bullying is often repetitive, offensive, intimidating and abusing of power.

What Is Not Classed As Bullying?

Employees often have a misunderstanding about what constitutes workplace bullying and harassment. These are not considered bullying behaviours unless the proper processes are not followed:

  • Firm management
  • Impoliteness from the employer
  • Dissatisfaction with an employee’s performance
  • Inconsiderate conduct of a manager resulting in an unhappy employee

What To Do If You Are Bullied:

Speak with the bully

Although it is not always acceptable, having an open dialogue with the culprit about the behaviour can sometimes be the first step. Let them know how you’re feeling about it. Maintain a professional and courteous demeanour while being honest. Confronting your bully in person may be frightening (or just awkward), but it may be an effective method to get the behaviour to stop.

The culprit may be completely oblivious of how they are making you feel. Even if their actions are premeditated, a strong dialogue may be enough to get them to stop. If you have to take the next steps, the fact that you had this chat may help your case. So, take meticulous notes on the situation and the conversation you had.

Talk with a trusted employer:

If speaking with the perpetrator is impractical or unhelpful, speak with someone else at your company or in your union. The appropriate person to counsel will be determined by the structure of your organisation and the connections you’ve built. Often, your manager, Human Resources, or a representative from your union (if applicable) will be able to assist you. Your employer should have an internal grievance mechanism in place to deal with bullying and harassment accusations.

Also, don’t be hesitant to confide in someone you can trust, such as a friend or spouse. They may not be able to change your circumstances, but it’s just as vital to look after your mental well-being, particularly during times of stress at work.

Other Tips:

  • Act as soon as possible – don’t wait until things have gotten out of hand before speaking out.
  • Keep a record – Keeping a paper journal where you write down every episode of bullying, harassment, or discrimination, including information on the offenders, dates, times, and witnesses, is an easy way to accomplish this.

Seek Legal Advice:

We’re here to support you if you’re being treated unfairly at work. Resolve Legal is an employment legal firm that specialises in workplace bullying, harassment, and discrimination. Our attorneys will explain the legal system to you and walk you through all of your rights and responsibilities as an employee. We can examine your position and advise you on the best course of action. You can speak with a lawyer at any point during the process, from when the behaviour first appears to after you’ve exhausted all other options. Get in touch with us today if you’re struggling with workplace bullying.