We have read many articles about workplace bullying, be it discrimination, unfair treatments etc. Very often, in order to secure our rice-bowl, we keep quiet about it until a certain extent whereby some people get depression because of the constant bottling of the feelings. Some might voice their grievances to the HR or management but at times, the grievances might not be attended to. So, here are some ways to deal with workplace bullies:
1. Understand the bully – They gain enjoyment when they torment people and they have deep seated psychological problems. The more you suffer, the happier they are. So ignore whatever they say to you because they either criticize you or demoralize you with their words. They like to make people feel small. They mean nothing. Highlight this to the HR department and your direct boss so that they are aware of it.
2. Stand up for yourself – Sometimes we are often accused of something which we didn’t do just because they didn’t like you. Call for a meeting to discuss about the issue (not the accusation), and stand up for yourself. If you didn’t do it, don’t compromise and accept it. NEVER be a “Yes man”. Keep your cool and don’t be emotional during the meeting, display your professionalism. Even if the bully starts verbally abusing you, keep your cool and don’t fall for their trap. Your boss will definitely appreciate your calmness. Be objective and not subjective. After the meeting, put the discussion into words and send it across to the participants of the meeting. Sometimes, we just need the Black & White to protect ourselves.
3. Talk to your boss & be cool – Never say that you are unable to work with anyone because it will reflect on you being childish. Tell your boss that you would like to seek their advice because you are facing some challenges working with this person and would like to know how you should go about improving the relationships in order to improve on the productivity. Don’t start tearing and complaining about this bully.
4. Talk to your friends/ family about it (not colleagues) – Let out yourself during such conversations. Yes, of course they couldn’t help you much but at least you don’t have to bottle up all your frustrations. It’s always good to have a listening ear that can provide you with advice as they might have gone through this stage and they are experienced enough. Of course there are nice colleagues around but you never know when they are going to stab you in your back and you will appear to be the one trying to create politics. Don’t rant your frustrations on social media platforms. You wouldn’t want your boss to think that you are trying to damage the reputation of the company and get sacked right?
5. Say Sayonara – There comes a point when we cannot take it anymore. So just say goodbye to your boss if they are allowing the bully to thrive on by not taking any actions. Do not let them affect your mental health. There are definitely other jobs out there. During the resignation, tell the HR during the exit interview about the challenges you have faced, and it’s up to them if they want to take any action. =) During your job interview, don’t badmouth anyone in your ex-company. Always part on good grounds as cross references might be conducted. Research shows that candidates who bad mouth their companies normally wouldn’t get recruited. Tell your interviewer of the challenges in an objective manner and always say what you have learnt from the experiences. =)