For October’s Domestic Violence Awareness Month, I am continuing a series on the various abuses. Now, I will proceed with the next abuse: “workplace abuse” or “workplace bullying”.
The Workplace Bullying Institute’s definition of workplace bullying is “repeated, health-harming mistreatment of victims by one or more perpetrators that takes one or more of the following forms:
Verbal abuse, offensive conduct or behaviors (including nonverbal) which are threatening, humiliating, or intimidating, and work interference or sabotage which prevents work from getting done.
In other words, workplace abuse or bullying is 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 a campaign of interpersonal destruction at the hands of a coworker or boss.”
“Workplace bullying is driven by the abusers need to control the targeted individual, requires consequences for the targeted individual, and escalates to involve others who side with the bully, either voluntarily or through coercion. It is similar domestic violence at work, where the abuser is on the payroll. These behaviors include psychological abuse, psychological harassment, personal harassment, and emotional abuse at work.”
“Being bullied at work most closely resembles the experience of being a battered spouse. The target is kept close to the abuser by the nature of the relationship between them like husband to wife or boss to subordinate or co-worker to co-worker. However, where school-age bullying usually affects the weakest, workplace bullying is different. Most victims of workplace abuse are veteran workers who others turn to for guidance. They are better liked and have empathy for people, even their bullies. Colleagues, customers, and management, with exception to the bully, appreciate the contributions that the victims bring to the workplace. These victims are ethical and honest. Some are whistle-blowers who expose fraudulent practices. They are not schemers or con artists. Most of these victims are people with a desire to help, heal, teach, develop, nurture others. These victims do not like confrontation and do not respond to aggression with aggression. Consequently, the abusers manipulate these situations for their own abusive advantage. Unfortunately, many of these victims of workplace abuse or bullying, lose their jobs due to the manipulation of their abusers…”