Posts Tagged ‘HR’

Employer Resource Council: 20 Subtle Signs of Workplace Bullying

Sunday, November 10th, 2013

This week’s bullying situation in the NFL in which a player resigned because of bullying by a teammate, should remind employers to consider whether bullying by coworkers or bosses is affecting their employees and their ability to retain quality talent.

HR Insights Blog, ERC (, Nov. 5, 2013

If you think workplace bullying doesn’t affect some of your employees, you’re mistaken. One in four employees is affected by it. There is a misconception that bullying is overt. Rather, it’s often subtle, slow, and insidious mistreatment that passes over the radar screen.

Rarely can bullying be identified based on one action, but rather a pattern of actions over a long period of time. This is why it so often goes undetected in the workplace, and your employees could be suffering because of it.

Bullying Defined

The Workplace Bullying Institute defines bullying as “repeated, health-harming mistreatment of one or more persons (the targets) by one or more perpetrators that takes one or more of the following forms: verbal abuse, offensive conduct/behaviors (including nonverbal) which are threatening, humiliating, or intimidating; or work interference – sabotage – which prevents work from getting done.”

The primary issue with bullying is that the perpetrator desires to control the other person’s behavior, usually for his or her own needs, personal agenda, or self-serving motives. Bullies use a variety of subtle and sometimes not-so-subtle ways to control others emotionally, psychologically, and even physically.

Adept bullies and manipulators are often extremely controlling people who are attuned to certain personality traits to exploit others. They are skilled “people readers” and make it their task to understand someone’s flaws to determine what techniques can be used against them. Some even go a step further and mask their bullying behind a charming and nice demeanor and even a noble cause.



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Posted in Media About Bullying, NFL: Jonathan Martin, Print: News, Blogs, Magazines, Tutorials About Bullying, WBI Education, WBI in the News | 12 Archived Comments | Post A Comment () »

Metropolitan Corporate Counsel: The Case For Getting Aggressive With Workplace Bullies

Thursday, August 22nd, 2013

By Kelly Ann Bird & Lindsay J. Jarusiewicz, The Metropolitan Corporate Counsel, August 21, 2013

Every parent is familiar with the word "bullying." It has now also become an important employee relations issue for businesses. Though there is no current federal or state law explicitly prohibiting workplace bullying, many states are considering legislation that would make bullying conduct illegal and create remedies for aggrieved employees. But even without workplace anti-bullying legislation, there is good reason for employers to address bullying concerns in the workplace. First, if unchecked, employees may assert claims related to bullying by sweeping the conduct into allegations of violations under existing laws. Second, the conduct is prevalent and persistent and, as such, clearly impacts the workplace.


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Posted in Healthy Workplace Bill (U.S. campaign), WBI Education, WBI in the News, Workplace Bullying Laws | 1 Archived Comment | Post A Comment () »

No employer-provided health insurance? Wait until 2015 (maybe)

Friday, July 5th, 2013

Valerie Jarrett, an adviser to Pres. Obama, was the one to announce that employers will have an extra year to not provide employees with health insurance if they do not now. The White House chose to make the announcement the day before July 4 on Jarrett’s blog. The headline read: “We’re Listening to Businesses about the Health Care Law.” Too bad they don’t listen to workers without insurance whose immediate health problems require medical attention! But in America, as in no other major industrialized nation, without insurance people don’t have affordable access to doctors, clinics or hospitals.

Jarrett wrote:

“As we implement this law, we have and will continue to make changes as needed. In our ongoing discussions with businesses we have heard that you need the time to get this right,” she said in a post on the White House blog. “We are listening.”

According to the Kaiser Family Foundation 2012 Survey of Employers: 94% of employers with 50-199 employees provide some sort of health insurance (albeit with high deductibles and premium sharing); 98% of employers with over 200 employees make insurance available. Then, why the delay? Implementation of the law (passed back in 2010) will affect only employers with 50 or more employees.

SHRM, the HR trade association sure was happy, telling their members:

HR professionals across the country are celebrating today, not just in anticipation for Independence Day, but because of the U.S. Treasury Department’s announcement of a one year delay in implementing the employer mandate in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

Thought you’d want to know who has the ear of the President.


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Internal complaint systems attack those who dare tell truths

Wednesday, July 3rd, 2013

Bullied targets often wait a long time to complain about their plight. Delays happen when they are not quite certain what freight train hit them. They ruminate too long about why they unjustly were targeted? How could someone be so cruel? Eventually, they want to tell their employer.

Chain-of-command reporting requirements are common. Got a problem? Tell your supervisor. But when your supervisor is the bully, the requirement is a dangerous trap. It turns out to be equally ineffective when the bully’s boss is asked to make the bullying stop. [See the 2012 WBI Strategies Effectiveness study about the futility of confronting the bully directly or telling the bully’s boss.]

People erroneously believe workplace bullying is an HR-level problem. Not so. It is more about leadership or the lack thereof. [See what understanding by a leader looks like.] Expecting HR to resolve bullying by holding a manager-bully accountable is a rare event. HR is there to defend the interests of management. They are not a neutral party in disputes. Retaliation is the most frequent consequence of following internal procedures for righting a wrong.

The larger point is that internal systems put the institution in the tripartite role of abuse by agents of the employer, then they are investigators, and finally they are judges and adjudicators. How can this turn out well for those subjected to harm by that same system? Internal investigators grant credibility to managers, while non-supervisory workers are considered malingerers, malcontents, disgruntled and mendacious. Senior managers consider workers who report that the best connected friends of those senior managers have done bad things to be the problem. The reporting is considered the problem — not the unconscionable actions that the complainant felt had to be reported.

And so we see the model repeated by several government institutions: the NSA, the CIA-FBI, the Dept. of Defense. Truth tellers (whistleblowers) and truth-telling victims are hunted like criminals, dehumanized, discounted, ignored, tormented, terminated, discharged from service, or imprisoned all to discourage others from showing the same kind of courage.



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Posted in Commentary by G. Namie, Fairness & Social Justice Denied, Media About Bullying, Print: News, Blogs, Magazines, The New America, Tutorials About Bullying, WBI Education | 3 Archived Comments | Post A Comment () »

Oops: 56 percent of US employers do NOT have workplace bullying policies

Thursday, March 28th, 2013

UPDATE: To write a great workplace bullying policy and enforcement procedures, go here.

When fuzzy facts (first generation distortion) are allowed to pass for actual data and circulated widely by media (2nd gen distortion) they used by critics to undermine the anti-bullying campaign. Let’s clear the air about current American employer engagement in stopping workplace bullying.

SHRM (the HR trade association) conducted a 2011 study about workplace bullying and reported results in Feb. 2012. The non-scientific survey of members had a low response rate of 15% (the final 401 respondents meant SHRM randomly polled 2,673 members). The results shed light on HR’s view about the prevalence of workplace bullying policies in the U.S. When asked if respondents’ organizations had specific anti-bullying policies in place, 44% of HR respondents defiantly stated their organization has “no policy and has no plans to put a workplace bullying policy in place.” The answer, “No, but we plan to put a formal policy in place in the next 12 months,” was chosen by 13%. Another 40% said, “Yes, our workplace bullying policy is part of another workplace policy.” Only 3% of SHRM members said “Yes. We have a separate workplace bullying policy” in our organization.

Actual slide from 2012 SHRM survey results from which 56% statistic was plucked

You can download the slide show from here.



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Posted in Employers Gone Wild: Doing Bad Things, Media About Bullying, Print: News, Blogs, Magazines, WBI Education, WBI Surveys & Studies | 4 Archived Comments | Post A Comment () »

Dr. Teresa Daniel, trusted HR expert on workplace bullying in CT on April 16

Thursday, March 21st, 2013

Human Resource Association of Central Connecticut (HRACC) hosts Teresa Daniel, PhD, JD
April 16, 2013, 5 to 8 pm
Sheraton Hotel
Rocky Hill, CT

Note: Teresa Daniel is a WBI colleague and friend. Unlike other HR folks, she understands completely how destructive workplace bullying is and how HR can improve its response.


From the Hartford Courant

Workplace bullying affects more than 50 million U.S. employees. This topic will be discussed at an April program sponsored by The Human Resource Association of Central Connecticut.

With one incident of bullying every seven minutes, sadly, bullying is the most frequent form of violence that school-aged children encounter.



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WBI Podcast 32: Outrageous by any other name

Monday, February 18th, 2013

Outrageous By Any Other Name

Bullied targets are not believed. Sometimes the disbelief is rooted in the outrageousness of perpetrators and the innovative cruelty they inflict on targets. It’s hard to believe people can be so vicious.

There are three principal groups who deny bullying as it actually happens. Each group of disbelievers is discussed in separate audio tracks to make WBI Podcast 32.

Listen to all three parts in one clip:

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Or in separate sections:

1. U.S. biz school researchers who cite “victim precipitation” as a cause

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2. Employers — executives and HR

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3. U.S. courts who make proving that the bullying was outrageous nearly impossible

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Posted in Healthy Workplace Bill (U.S. campaign), Podcasts, Rulings by Courts, WBI Education, Workplace Bullying Laws | No Archived Comments | Post A Comment () »

HR Connection: Why is bullying legal in the business world?

Thursday, January 3rd, 2013

By Jeanne Allen

Bullying is very much a part of business these days. Those bullies in middle school and high school grew up and are waiting right around the corner for their next target. It’s disheartening but true — in some circumstances bullying is legal.

According to The Workplace Bullying Institute, a nonprofit organization dedicated to understanding, correcting and preventing all abuse at work, bullying is four times more prevalent than illegal harassment.



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NLRB ticks off HR with new restrictions on investigation secrecy

Tuesday, August 7th, 2012

For decades, the NLRB has been under republican control and served employers’ needs to look the other way as union organizers are indiscriminately fired for doing what should be protected by law. On Jan. 9, 2012, President Obama made a recess appointment of Richard Griffin, a long-time union attorney, to the Board. Griffin joined Sharon Block, winner of the JFK Labor Law Award, and Chairman Mark Pearce whose prior legal experience was with labor. In May, disgraced republican member Terence Flynn resigned after two Inspector General reports concluded that he had leaked information about NLRB deliberations prior to decisions to Mitt Romney’s adviser. There are now 3 democrats and one republican, Brian Hayes, on the Board.

Now come two recent decisions that make employers and HR livid.



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Posted in Rulings by Courts, Tutorials About Bullying, WBI Education, Workplace Bullying Laws | No Archived Comments | Post A Comment () »

Search for U.S. HR Heroes Begins at WBI

Friday, May 25th, 2012

Are you out there, professionals in Human Resources, who valiantly and effectively stop workplace bullying for employees where you work? We think so. You are good people, but relatively unknown. We want to hear your stories. WBI wants to promote HR HEROES.



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Posted in Employers Gone Wild: Doing Bad Things, Tutorials About Bullying, WBI Surveys & Studies | 7 Archived Comments | Post A Comment () »

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