Work Bullying-Be Part of the Solution | Jobs In DE

Work Bullying-Be Part of the Solution

By: Jeremy Haskell

You've seen it. You've probably been the target of it. And more of you than want to admit it are guilty of having done it. Bullying.

The Old Problem

In a hyper-connected world, it's hard to turn to any reliable news source and not find an unfortunate story of a young student who has taken drastic action as a result of being bullied by classmates. Witness the YouTube videos of school yard fights, the front page headlines of school shootings and the truly heart breaking stories of teenagers ending their own lives much too soon. It's tragic. It's horrific. It's been going on for decades, and it seems to be getting worse.

The New Problem

It is getting worse, because it's happening at work now, too.

While you may not be stuffed into a locker or have your chair pulled out from under you at your cubicle, you've most likely been witness to workplace bullying. According to the Workplace Bullying Institute, workplace bullying is defined as "repeated, health-harming mistreatment of one or more persons, by one or more perpetrators in the form of verbal abuse, offensive conduct/behavior and work interference." Studies show that nearly one-third of U.S. workers are the victim of workplace bullying, and about 20 percent of those instances cross the line to clearly defined "harassment".

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This spring, at the 18th Annual Maine Human Resources Convention, Erahm Christopher and JC Pohl of Teen Truth gave an inspiring keynote address on the pervasiveness of and harm caused by workplace bullies. I had the privilege of speaking briefly with both JC and Erahm after their talk, and I left inspired to "be the difference" that is so necessary to help bring this epidemic to an end.

The Pressures of Work

One of my biggest takeaways from the conversation was the notion that work is the place where people go to obtain the resources they need to live their lives, i.e. a paycheck, benefits, etc. People usually can't just walk away from a job. What a horrible proposition, then, to be forced to go to a job only to be ridiculed, taunted, and marginalized by a workplace bully. This leads not only to personal distress, but could, and often does, ultimately affect the family unit at home.

We live in a stressful world. The world of work is changing constantly and we're often pushed to meet the demands of our managers, executives and the market. It is important to remember that we're really all in this together, and that the last thing we need is added interpersonal stress.

Your Role

Are you seeing bullying in your workplace? What are you doing about it? It is up to us all to help make our world a better place. Step up and "be the difference" in your own corner of the world.

To learn more about Teen Truth, be sure to check out their website and like them on Facebook. You can also purchase the Teen Truth book on Amazon.

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In his dual role of Sales Manager/Business Development at JobsInDE.com, if Jeremy Haskell isn't busy developing new business partnerships and product initiatives, he's developing sales people. Working with companies, he advises them on recruiting strategies that result in reduced turnover and increased productivity. He holds a degree in psychology from Syracuse University and previously worked as a recruiter for Robert Half International. Jeremy is the recipient of many recognition awards and has developed and facilitated the company's peer mentoring program.