Archive for the ‘WBI Surveys & Studies’ Category


New WBI survey for targets of, & witnesses to, workplace bullying

Tuesday, May 20th, 2014

Feelings & Experiences

Please complete the survey only if you are, or were, a target of bullying or a witness to it.

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Workplace Bullying: U.S. Employers’ Reactions

Monday, May 19th, 2014




EMPLOYER REACTION TO BULLYING in 2014

In 2014 at the time of the Survey, there was no state or federal law yet enacted to compel American employers to address abusive conduct that occurred outside the limited definitions of illegal discriminatory actions. The absence of a law means that employers may tolerate misconduct without legal risk. Of course, repeated abusive conduct, as defined in the prevalence question, does prove costly for employers who choose to ignore it. Tangible costs include unwanted turnover of key skilled personnel, absenteeism, higher insurance costs (health and employment practices liability), and litigation expenses. Intangible costs include: damage to institutional reputation and an impaired ability to recruit and retain the best talent.

A rational employer would seek to minimize preventable costs and strive to eliminate demonstrable abusive conduct. A 2013 WBI poll conducted by Zogby of Business Leaders, CXO-level corporate leaders, showed that 68% of executives considered “workplace bullying a serious problem.” And according to this current 2014 Survey, 48% of Americans are affected by bullying. Given the confluence of this awareness, we asked the public how employers were voluntarily dealing with bullying without needing to comply with laws.

Question: What do you know to be the most common American employer reaction to complaints of abusive conduct (when it is not illegal discrimination)?


(more…)

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Workplace Bullying: Race, Ideology, and the U.S. Bullying Experience

Monday, May 12th, 2014

RACE AND THE BULLYING EXPERIENCE in 2014

Below are the percentages within each ethnic group that had been bullied, witnessed it and the combined percentage to represent those “affected” by bullying.


The overall percentage of those affected was 47.7%. All three non-White groups had much higher rates than the U.S. percentage. Hispanics were the highest; African-Americans were second. Non-White respondents are considered to be members of legally protected status groups. Employers have to comply with state and federal anti-discrimination laws. That is, when they endure harassment, they would be eligible to demand protection from their employers in most situations.
(more…)

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Workplace Bullying: Perpetrator Rank & Number in the U.S.

Monday, April 28th, 2014

PERPETRATOR RANK & NUMBER in 2014

Mobbing was the term adopted by Heinz Leymann to describe health-harming abusive conduct at work. Mobbing implies multiple perpetrators. Mobbing preceded the term workplace bullying. However, WBI has consistently defined bullying as committed by one or more persons. Bullying nearly always escalates to more than one person joining the main instigator to torment the target.

Question: Who was (were) the principal perpetrator(s)?



Respondents said the following:

In 14% of cases, the bullying was generated by a combination of perpetrators operating at different levels of the organization – bosses, peers, and subordinates.

With respect to perpetrator’s rank, not counting the combined sources cases:


This pattern is consistent with previous WBI national Surveys.

No interactions between rank and race or rank and gender were found.

When perpetrators enjoy a higher organizational rank than targets, opportunities to abuse authority present themselves. Further, the likelihood of targets being able to confront the boss about her or his unacceptable conduct approaches zero, given the difficulty of crossing the “power gradient.” Coworker, peer-to-peer, bullying may not involve power differences, but the health harm caused by social exclusion/ostracism that peers employ poses an equal, if not greater, threat to the target’s safety.

Download the Perpetrator Rank & Number mini-Report
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Gary Namie, PhD, Research Director
Research Assistants: Daniel Christensen & David Phillips

© 2014, Workplace Bullying Institute, All Rights Reserved

Download the complete Report | Access individual sections of the Report

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Workplace bullying invades the family of the targeted workers

Monday, April 21st, 2014


Impact on Family

Displacement, Withdrawal, Anxiety & Despondency

The most obvious and direct impact is displacement of the target’s anger and shame about being bullied at work onto the family at home. This is akin to the coming home and “kicking the dog.” When anger can’t be leveled against the source of frustration and humiliation, the bully at work, especially when the bully is a boss, often the only outlet is outside work. The difficulty of confronting-stopping a boss is traced to the historical uphill battle to cross the “power gradient.” Telling a boss to go to hell brings certain retaliation. It’s part of our hierarchical world.

By the way, displacement could occur on the way home. Pity other drivers on the commute home or wait staff at restaurants at lunchtime who might be in harm’s way. Nevertheless, most workers exposed to abusive supervision tend to bring it home. Violence at work begets violence at home.

Much more common is emotional withdrawal. Targets are overwhelmed by emotional abuse and exhausted at work. It takes all energy they can muster just to survive the 8 to 10 hours and commute to home. The stress strips away their appetite. So, they come home, skip dinner, and retire to bed seeking protection that sleep might provide. Sadly, sleep is disrupted by the distress caused by bullying. Solid REM sleep is rarely enjoyed. Sleep deficits make the targeted family member a non-participant, especially weekends. Traditions and family routines get postponed or abandoned completely. Everyone’s schedules are changed to accommodate the wounded worker in the family. This builds resentment. But targets who do not seek counseling or have their bullying situations reversed are trapped in a sleepless withdrawal loop.

Bullied targets also bring home anxiety. This is a normal reaction to the personalized stressors that bullying poses — domination, intimidation and humiliation. Even for individuals who have never experienced abuse (33% of workplace bullying targets), bullying fosters anxiety, the forewarning of distress. Distress, in turn, causes many stress-related health problems for targets. The point is that the anxiety is seen and felt by all family members exposed directly to it.

The inability to stop the bullying by the targeted parent creates a sense of despondency. The unhelpful reactions of coworkers further worsens the feeling. Thus, coming home is the message that mother or father or lover or wife or husband, once an integrated adult, is falling apart, suddenly powerless.

The coupling of anxiety and despondency is a toxic stew that affects the mood at home. Prolonged exposure renders both adults and children vulnerable to long-term effects from situations over which no one at home can control.

(more…)

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Posted in Bullying & Health, Tutorials About Bullying, WBI Education, WBI Surveys & Studies | 1 Archived Comment | Post A Comment () »



Workplace Bullying: U.S. Workforce & Population Affected

Tuesday, April 15th, 2014

AMERICANS AFFECTED BY BULLYING

We begin with the frequencies reported for each of the bullying experience categories from the Survey previously discussed — the two classes of direct experience with bullying, the two witnessing classes, and the self-described perpetrators, and the three classes of individuals with no personal bullying experience (believers and disbelievers who were both aware of bullying, and those who claim to be not aware of bullying).

The Survey was conducted at a time when the U.S. non-farm labor force was approximately 137,499,000. We are able to estimate the equivalent number of working Americans that correspond to each bullying experience category. The estimates appear in the middle column in the table below.

Then, we estimate the adult (over age 18) U.S. population, 76.5% of the total, to be 240,113,369 (in 2012). We apply the bullying experience category frequencies to that total and arrive at the values in the right column in the table below.

(more…)

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Workplace Bullying: U.S. National Prevalence

Tuesday, April 8th, 2014

U.S. NATIONAL PREVALENCE in 2014

Workplace bullying is repeated mistreatment and a form of “abusive conduct.” For the first time, we used the definition of workplace bullying that matches perfectly the definition codified in the Healthy Workplace Bill.

Thus, we asked Americans to consider only the most serious forms of bullying. Eye rolling may be part of bullying, but it alone is not sufficient. Nonverbal cues coupled with verbal abuse and the tactics of exclusion are delivered by perpetrators repeatedly in order to intentionally harm targeted individuals. The closest analogy to workplace bullying is domestic violence. Bullying is a non-physical form of workplace violence.

(more…)

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Posted in Bullying-Related Research, Social/Mgmt/Epid Sciences, WBI Education, WBI Surveys & Studies | No Archived Comments | Post A Comment () »



BNA: Over 65 Million Workers Affected by Bullying, But Most Employers Don’t React Adequately

Monday, April 7th, 2014

By Rhonda Smith, Bloomberg BNA Human Resources Report, April 7, 2014

Twenty-seven percent of U.S. workers are either experiencing abusive conduct at work now or did so in the past, and 21 percent have witnessed it, according to a 2014 national survey report from the Workplace Bullying Institute.

A total of 65.6 million workers have been affected by bullying, the Bellingham, Wash.-based WBI said.

The survey results also show that employers still fail to fully address repeated mistreatment and abusive conduct by managers as well as rank-and-file workers, the report’s authors said. As a result, bullying–which ranges from threats and humiliation to intimidation, work sabotage or verbal abuse–continues, they said.

“It is clear that in 2014, despite significant public awareness … employers are doing very little voluntarily to address bullying,” the report said. “At the time of the survey, there is no state law yet enacted to compel employers to attend to, rather than ignore, abusive conduct.”

Zogby Analytics conducted the online survey of 1,000 U.S. adults Jan. 27-28.

(more…)

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Posted in Healthy Workplace Bill (U.S. campaign), WBI Education, WBI in the News, WBI Surveys & Studies | No Archived Comments | Post A Comment () »



New WBI Instant Poll: Political Ideology

Friday, March 14th, 2014

What is your political ideology?

View Results

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Rare news: Bullied target gets new NFL job — Jonathan Martin

Wednesday, March 12th, 2014

This may be the happy ending denied so many bullied targets. The most famous of all targets in recent times, Jonathan Martin, has landed a new job. He was traded by the Miami Dolphins, the team with the abusive work environment that compelled him to voluntarily leave, to the 49ers coached by Jim Harbaugh, his college coach at Stanford.

And he’s happy. Read the press account.

WBI research with bullied targets found that after bullying, 29% made more money, 37% were not bullied again, 65% were not able to match their lost income, and 26% never found another job. So, Jonathan Martin is one of the lucky ones. Of course, he still has to win a job on the 53-man roster this summer, but at least he has been given the chance.

We wish him luck.

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For now, it appears this story ends, you can follow the full NFL story from the start in the Category list in the sidebar: NFL: Jonathan Martin Read the NFL investigation report.

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