Archive for the ‘WBI Surveys & Studies’ Category


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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New WBI Instant Poll: Political Ideology

Friday, March 14th, 2014

What is your political ideology?

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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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New WBI Instant Poll: Witness reactions to workplace bullying

Monday, March 10th, 2014

How did the most of the witnesses to your bullying react to the ongoing mistreatment? Check all that apply.

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Time: Bullying at Work – How to Make It Stop

Monday, March 10th, 2014

By Martha C. White, Time, March 10, 2014

You can take the bully out of the schoolyard, but it seems you can’t take the playground mentality out of bullies even after they grow up. More than a quarter of Americans say they’ve been bullied at work, 7% within the last year alone, according to the Workplace Bullying Institute, which commissioned a new survey studying the prevalence and impact of bullying on the job.

Men make up about two-thirds of bullies, and their targets are women 57% of the time. Although women make up only 31% of bullies, their targets are overwhelmingly — more than two-thirds of the time — other women. Bullying by a boss is the most common kind of workplace bullying, making up more than half of all instances.

“Sadly, what stops bullying the most is requiring the target to lose her or his job,” says Gary Namie, director of the Workplace Bullying Institute. According to the survey, in 61% of cases, the bullying only stops when the target quits, is fired or forced out.

But experts in office bullying say there’s hope. There are steps you can take to stop office bullies. So if you’ve been the target of the office bully, read on.

(more…)

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Posted in Print: News, Blogs, Magazines, WBI Education, WBI in the News, WBI Surveys & Studies | 2 Archived Comments | Post A Comment () »



Benefits Pro: Workplace bullying legislation repeatedly defeated

Monday, March 3rd, 2014

By Scott Wooldridge, Benefits Pro, March 3, 2014

Public awareness of workplace bullying has never been higher, thanks to high-profile cases such as the one involving Miami Dolphins teammates Richie Incognito and Jonathan Martin. Yet none of the more than two dozen states that have taken up the issue has actually passed any legislation to tackle the problem.

A recent survey found that 93 percent of Americans support legislation that would offer protections against bullying at work. The survey, conducted by Zogby Analytics for the Workplace Bullying Institute, found that 27 percent of Americans report having experienced abusive conduct at work. Another 21 percent say they have witnessed such behavior. Overall, 72 percent of those surveyed said they were aware of the issue of workplace bullying.

“Everybody has a story,” said Gary Namie, co-founder and director of the Workplace Bullying Institute. “It is an epidemic. When you count witnesses, 65 million people in the workforce know firsthand what (bullying) is about.”

The Incognito-Martin case brought workplace bullying into the spotlight.

Martin accused Incognito of bullying him, and then left the team. A lawyer hired by the National Football League to investigate the matter recently released a report concluding that Incognito “engaged in a pattern of harassment” of Martin.

Namie and his Bellingham, Wash.-based institute have been working on the issue for more than 20 years, but he said that the Incognito-Martin case caused “a tectonic shift.”

(more…)

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Posted in Employers Gone Wild: Doing Bad Things, Healthy Workplace Bill (U.S. campaign), NFL: Jonathan Martin, WBI Education, WBI in the News, WBI Surveys & Studies, Workplace Bullying Laws | No Archived Comments | Post A Comment () »



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