What are the the signs you are being bullied at your workplace? What can you do about it?
While bullying is usually perpetrated by someone in a position of power and authority, peers and even subordinates are also known to engage in bullying. A bully (read: weak soul) is actually an insecure, paranoid, control freak. Their aim is to belittle and ultimately diminish their prey through persistent hostile and unnecessarily rude behaviour. Can you spot such a type at work? Here are 10 signs that you’re being bullied at the office:
- See obvious biasness
Others in your work group are receiving preferential treatment top projects, travel perks and free time. Meanwhile, you find that most of your requests along the same lines are denied without reasonable explanation.
- Your progress goes unseen
Say you’ve been given a directive with certain objectives, an ultimate goal and a deadline. You work hard and with focus only to find out, that suddenly there’s a change in direction on the project. Your progress is not celebrated or applied to the new project, but not even taken into account.
- All your decisions are questioned
So you are constantly bombarded by excessive micro-managing? You don’t feel like your intuition or decisions are being trusted, and you can’t explain why.Your boss and others hover over you much more than telling you what to do (and what not to do). You get the sense that you are wrongly perceived as incompetent and your decision-making capability is greatly reduced as a result.
- You are socially alienated
All of a sudden, you’re excluded from meetings you once attended. Your colleagues tend to discuss work prior to your arrival and you are left with absolutely no clue what to do. Besides, you are not marked on important mails. Co-workers tend to avoid you and keep interaction to a minimum. You may also find that you’re no longer invited to post work drinks with your teammates.
- You often feel targeted
Often, when you make a comment, suggestion or disagree with someone’s opinion, you’re responded to with a plethora of responses by others. It doesn’t matter whether you’re right -the gang mentality is determined to prove you wrong.
- Your health is failing
Mentally, you’re drained and your energy is zapped. You’re sleeping more and getting out of bed is a real task for you. Exercising and socialising with your folks is a chore. Bullying can lead to depression, anxiety, panic attacks and mood swings. There are physical symptoms such as increased blood pressure, rapid heart beat, and loss of appetite (or excessive eating).
- Have experienced verbal spat
You’re subjected to negative, abusive language -reprimanded often in front of the entire office. Verbal abuse can also be more subtle than loud insults.You may find that you are being joked around with in a way that makes you feel uncomfortable and small, and that too can be verbal bullying.
- Your work is publicly diminished
Your dedication to your job is not acknowledged by your boss or they give credit to others (for your hard work) in a public setting such as a meeting.
- Face unnecessary criticism
It seems that in the eyes of your boss, you are ineffective and unprofessional. Feedback is always provided in the form of criticism and delivered in a way to make you feel awful about yourself. There’s no effort to provide guidance.
- Presented unreasonable obstacles
So does the boss man purposely throw roadblocks in front of you to prevent you from successfully completing a project? Now, this is a major act of bullying.
How to deal?
Once you’ve come to the realisation that you’re a victim of bullying -at work, or life -it’s important to know what kind of re course you have. Here are possible actions that you could take.
– Speak to a trusted authority in the organisation: A good start may be human resources. They should be able to help you under stand, if you’re actually being bullied. If it’s determined that a bullying situation exists, they can also provide guidance on how to deal with it. Alternatively, you may feel more comfortable speaking with a higher authority senior colleague.
– Know your rights: If you feel that you’re not being heard within your company, you might seek external counsel.
– Find another job: This should be a last resort. But sometimes it’s not worth the fight -emotion ally and financially. Respect your self. Look for new employment with a company possessing a strong culture of integrity. Such companies have zero tolerance policies.