Posts Tagged ‘bully boss’


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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Posted in WBI Education, WBI Surveys & Studies | No Archived Comments | Post A Comment () »



Forbes: Is your boss a bully?

Tuesday, April 8th, 2014

By Carol Kinsey Goman, Forbes, April 6, 2014

I met Brenda when she managed a 2,000-person department for a Fortune 500 company. Brought in to help her with an upcoming change initiative, I was impressed by Brenda’s intelligence, creativity, political savvy, and dedication to her job. She had all the qualities of a senior executive – which was her career goal.

But she was also a bully. One direct report described her as a “kiss-up and slap-down kind of manager.” The targets of the bullying were especially demoralized, but even those on her staff who only witnessed the bad behavior began to devote more energy to protecting themselves than they did to helping the company. Brenda’s dysfunctional management style eventually led to a decline in her department’s performance and, as a result, the change initiative was abandoned. Eventually Brenda’s career was derailed by the increasing number of enemies she made with every nasty glare and mean-spirited remark. She resigned when it became obvious that she would never get the promotion she coveted.

Stories about bullies don’t always end with them resigning in disgrace. In fact, many bullies thrive. You may even be working for one.

(more…)

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Posted in Media About Bullying, Print: News, Blogs, Magazines, Tutorials About Bullying, WBI Education, WBI in the News | No Archived Comments | Post A Comment () »



Power and incompetence: The makings of an office bully

Thursday, October 22nd, 2009

by Hans Villarica, Medill Wire Service, Oct. 22, 2009

Researchers Nathanael Fast of the University of Southern California and Serena Chen of the University of California, Berkeley, found in a series of studies that it is actually the combination of power and incompetence that can result in bad boss behavior. The paper will be published in the November issue of the journal Psychological Science.

 [FYI, the paper is also described in our article and can be requested from the WBI Research list - A7. ] (more…)

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Posted in Bullying-Related Research, WBI in the News | 3 Archived Comments | Post A Comment () »



Role of Incompetence of Aggressive Bully Bosses Confirmed

Wednesday, October 14th, 2009

At WBI we have always said that the four principal characteristics of bullied targets (from our 2003 online study) posed a threat to bullies — the integrity of independence, possessing more technical skill, being well liked, and acting ethically and honestly. When personally threatened, people tend to get defensive. This seems true in bullying situations at the bully to target, interpersonal, level. Now there is some science to back the common-sense notion.

(more…)

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Posted in Bullying-Related Research, Employers Gone Wild: Doing Bad Things, Tutorials About Bullying | 2 Archived Comments | Post A Comment () »



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