Posts Tagged ‘prevention’
Tuesday, February 10th, 2015
The WBI State Coordinators are hard at work meeting with legislative sponsors for the WBI anti-bullying Healthy Workplace Bill. Here’s a status report. As of Feb. 10 …
• North Dakota became the 27th state to introduce something — HB 1428. That something is a simple paragraph declaring that public sector employers have to address harassment, ostensibly not just the currently illegal variety of discriminatory misdeeds. The bill cleared the House on a 91-0 vote and is on to the Senate for consideration. Visit the ND State page at the HWB website for details.
• Connecticut has a somewhat related bill — SB 432. It creates an “advisory board,” akin to past study groups and task forces that lawmakers use to delay taking any real action. Visit the CT State page at the HWB website for details.
• Utah’s HB 216 is the boldest of the small step bills to date. It requires employers to address the HWB’s definition of health-harming abusive conduct by providing annual training. Better than California’s recently implemented training mandate, Utah would require coverage of not only the definition of the phenomenon, but its effect on worker’s health and a description of what remedies the employer has in effect. Visit the UT State page at the HWB website for details.
• We saved the best for last. New York returns to lead the nation with a complete Healthy Workplace Bill in the Assembly — A 3250. The bill provides legal redress for employees harmed by abusive conduct. It rewards proactive employers who voluntarily protect workers with adequate policies and procedures with a litigation prevention mechanism. It defines the phenomenon and applies to employers in both private and public sectors. Our State Coordinators continue to set the highest bar for comparison. A 3250 has 80 co-sponsors. The Senate companion bill is in the works. Visit the NY State page at the HWB website for details.
Stay tuned for major developments as additional states come on board.
Tags: bills, Gary Namie, Healthy Workplace Bill, laws, legislation, prevention, state laws, Workplace Bullying Institute
Posted in Healthy Workplace Bill (U.S. campaign), Hear Ye! Hear Ye! 2, WBI Education, Workplace Bullying Laws | No Archived Comments | Post A Comment (
Tuesday, March 25th, 2014
Executives dwell in the C-Suite. By rank, they are often referred to as “leaders,” though leadership is a demonstrable skill instead of a position on an organization chart. Executive leaders in charge are the ones who set the operating the rules for their organizations. They establish the climate that can either foster and encourage bullying abusive conduct or they can act with indifference toward it (a laissez-faire management style) which allows bullies to run wild with impunity.
Given the clout executives have, they can stop bullying if they want to. Here are the steps they can take to make their organizations bullying free. [It’s a good idea to have them read first The Bully-Free Workplace to understand the barriers that await implementation of any plan.]
Tags: 2014 U.S. Workplace Bullying Survey, C-suite, correction, executives, Gary Namie, prevention, workplace bullying
Posted in Tutorials About Bullying, WBI Education | No Archived Comments | Post A Comment (
Tuesday, April 16th, 2013
Bullying in the workplace exists. It always has. We’ve provided the U.S. national prevalence statistics since 2007. But let’s say you just “stumbled upon” the term for status-blind harassment that is legal and unaddressed in American businesses.
Everyone knows it is wrong and immoral. It is costly in a million ways. But it is sustained.
Thursday, April 11th, 2013
By Sara Fagnilli, Crain’s Cleveland Business, Nov. 21, 2012
It’s a subject made for the movies! But, unlike its depiction in the 2003 film, Anger Management, treatment for anger management issues is very serious business. Haven’t we all been in a work situation where someone loses their temper? Know the employee with a reputation as the “office screamer?” Sometimes it can even be a boss!
While some people may be prone to outbursts of emotion at work, are these incidents simply a reflection of human nature or are they, perhaps, something more serious that an employer must address? Believe it or not, an employee with significant anger issues may be protected by various laws, if that anger is caused by or related to a medical condition.
As is the case with most employment-related disciplinary matters, the answer to the question of how to manage an employee with anger issues is – carefully. Each individual situation requires analysis to assess the issues involved and to determine how an employer should proceed. Are you dealing with the “office bully,” with an employee who consistently loses his or her temper with other employees, customers or clients, or with someone who just has a poor daily demeanor that manifests itself in regular outbursts, perhaps directed at no one in particular? In short, is this just an office bully or someone who has a mental impairment?
Workplace bullying, according to the Workplace Bullying Institute, is “repeated, health-harming mistreatment of one or more persons …one or more perpetrators…in the form of verbal abuse, offensive conduct/behaviors (including nonverbal) which are threatening, humiliating, or intimidating or work interference — sabotage — which prevents work from getting done.” Obviously, this definition covers someone who simply behaves badly in the workplace, but it also may describe the actions of an employee with a more serious, underlying behavioral problem. Employers may not, however, play psychologist/psychiatrist in attempting to assess an individual’s actions. Therein lies the challenge for the employer, as it must make an effort to determine the best, most appropriate way to handle such behavioral issues without placing a “label” upon the employee.
If the incident is one for which discipline is appropriate, a part of that discipline could presumably involve the requirement that the employee get counseling – seems simple and straightforward, right? Maybe not.
Requiring an employee with anger problems to get counseling could trigger certain issues and protections under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and by the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act of 2008 (ADAAA). Requiring an employee to obtain counseling could be found to be equivalent to requiring a medical exam. In order for an employer to avoid a violation of the ADAAA, it must demonstrate that such an exam (or counseling) is job-related and that it is a business necessity.
So what do you do with the “office screamer” – the person who doesn’t necessarily become involved in a confrontation with a co-worker or third party, but who has an unpleasant office demeanor that might not otherwise be subject to discipline? While that type of behavior could certainly lead to disciplinary action, a wise employer will want to derail that behavior before it escalates into a disciplinary event. It is possible for an employer – without running afoul of ADAAA regulations – to require that an employee attend a group anger management class. This type of group training can assist the employee in managing his or her interactions in the workplace, without necessarily implying that the employee has a mental impairment.
Anger is a significant workplace and societal issue, and there are professionals who deal specifically with anger management. The basic question, of course, centers around a determination of the source of one’s anger which, in today’s world, can stem from outside forces that ultimately manifest themselves within the workplace. While the majority of employees will not want their personal issues to impact their job situation, some people are unable to prevent that anger from manifesting itself at work. This situation is much more difficult to deal with from an employer’s standpoint. While an employer should be reluctant to delve into an employee’s personal situation, anger left unchecked can have drastic consequences in the workplace. This is an area where an employer would be well advised to proceed with caution and to consult with legal counsel early in the process in order to avoid ending up on the wrong end of an EEOC charge.
Sara J. Fagnilli is an attorney with Walter & Haverfield LLP in Cleveland. She is a member of the firm’s labor and employment, municipal law, public law and litigation practice groups.
Tags: anger management, gary namie, management skills, prevention, sara fagnilli, solution, work, workplace bullying, workplace violence
Posted in Media About Bullying | No Archived Comments | Post A Comment (
Tuesday, April 9th, 2013
By Larry Keller, Human Resources Executive, Nov. 21, 2012
Researchers at the University of Sheffield and the University of Nottingham in the United Kingdom have released results of three separate surveys of employees questioned at several universities which find that about 80 percent of the 320 respondents said they had experienced work-related cyberbullying at least once in the previous six months, and 14 to 20 percent of them said this happened to them at least once a week.
The findings have serious implications for HR professionals. Cyberbullying can result in lower employee morale, higher turnover and absenteeism, and damage to a company’s reputation if the practice is visible to a vast audience on the Internet, the researchers say. It also raises questions as to whether existing HR policies adequately address the behavior.
“A key issue . . . is to raise awareness of the impact of cyberbehavior — to prevent it [from] happening — or escalating,” says Carolyn Axtell, senior lecturer at the University of Sheffield’s Institute of Work Psychology and one of the authors of the study. “Due to the lack of social and physical cues online, people are less aware, and therefore less considerate about the other person’s reaction. Organizations could . . . set norms and expectations about online behavior — what is considered acceptable and what isn’t.”
Tuesday, April 2nd, 2013
Let’s assume your organization (Executive Team, HR and Legal) WANT to stop bullying. One of the first questions the group must answer is whether or not you jump in with both feet or move more slowly. Here are the pros and cons of each approach.
Thursday, March 28th, 2013
In a recent article for Fast Company, Brené Brown proposes 3 Ways To Kill Your Company’s Idea-Stifling Shame Culture. The article is about how shame at work kills innovation and it’s worth a read. The excerpt below shows specifically how workplace bullying and the shame that comes with it stops companies from thriving.
Thursday, March 21st, 2013
By Janet Fowler, Investopedia, July 16, 2012
Society is becoming more aware of bullying in all aspects of our world – everywhere from school to online. We are recognizing that bullying can be found in many different situations. Workplace bullying has also become a more common topic of discussion, with estimates suggesting that somewhere between 25 and 50% of the workforce has been subject to some form of bullying in the workplace. Nearly half of the working population has witnessed it at some point. Workplace bullying can take many forms and is generally intentional.
Workplace bullying can include verbal abuse, intimidation, humiliation and sabotage. These mistreatments are typically not one-time occurrences; they happen over a significant length of time and cause the victim to suffer a loss of self-esteem and possibly even long-term physical or mental health issues. Aside from the damages to the victims of bullying, organizations are finding that workplace bullying costs money as well.
Tags: gary namie, investopedia, janet fowler, management skills, prevention, solution, work, workplace bullying, workplace violence
Posted in Media About Bullying | No Archived Comments | Post A Comment (
Tuesday, March 19th, 2013
By Suzanne Lucas
Everyone knows that employees who are bullied at work are more likely to quit. But a new study from the University of British Columbia shows that it’s not only the victim who is likely to bail — the person’s coworkers are also likely to leave their jobs:
Witnessing or learning about these impacts of workplace bullying is likely to promote empathetic responses. Employees witnessing coworkers being bullied, or merely talking to them about their experiences, are pushed toward taking the targets’ perspective. Such perspective-taking leads one to experience cognitive or emotional empathy, which includes imagining how another feels… or actually sharing in another’s feelings. These empathetic responses can contribute to the understanding that a significant moral violation has occurred and the recognition that the victim does not deserve his or her mistreatment. As a result of this moral uneasiness, bullying at large within a work unit will increase employee intentions to quit their work group
Tags: gary namie, management skills, MoneyWatch, prevention, solution, Suzanne Lucas, work, workplace bullying, workplace violence
Posted in Media About Bullying | 1 Archived Comment | Post A Comment (
Thursday, March 14th, 2013
At thestar.com, Janice Rubin, a Toronto employment lawyer, explains that “[a]s business owners [and lawyers], we get it.” Janice goes on the give some steps business owners should take to establish healthy, bully-free workplaces.
Draft a “respect at work” anti-harassment policy
Establish an effective investigation process
Make sure hires don’t have a history of problems
Lead by example
Recognize lessons learned
Work Doctor’s Blueprint Services address all of these legal and managerial concerns.