March 7th, 2013
Awareness Training is Actually Employee Validation
Sometimes the last to know about destructive trends in the workplace are managers and executives. When it comes to workplace bullying, this could not be more true. When employers request that we come on-site to deliver speeches or order our Employee Awareness video, the requester wants employees to “be able to recognize when bullying happens.”
The truth is that employees, especially targets of the bullying, know it all too well. Recognition is one of their problems, but not the main one. They wonder why management doesn’t stop it. And for that we have the video Primer for Managers. The real benefit of “employee awareness raising” is that bullied workers are validated.
We validate these injured workers by demonstrating that they are not alone (the prevalence of bullying is epidemic) and that they did not invite their misery. We also connect the dots for targets to understand how bullying causes them surprising health problems. Finally, validation tells targets that they are not “crazy.” The personality of targets is such that they tend to blame themselves first. Over time, with the combined effects of stress-related health harm and the emotional impact of debilitating anxiety and clinical depression, it’s easy for them to feel destabilized emotionally. Targets deserve to be told that they are injured by the process. Injuries do not equal craziness.
Of course, coworkers blind to the effects of bullying on targeted individuals learn a great deal more than they knew before about the impact on the targets’ health.
So, please continue to provide awareness raising, but please know that it accomplishes much more than what you expected. For doing anything, you rank among the few employers who care enough to act.
This entry was posted on Thursday, March 7th, 2013 at 8:00 am and is filed under Tutorials About Bullying. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.