Allstate Protects Their Bullies

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Re: Allstate Protects Their Bullies

Unread postby RatPak11 » Fri Oct 18, 2013 4:21 am ... -bullying/

Addressing the Damaging and Lasting Effects of Adult Bullying
By Enjoli Francis
Oct 9, 2013 8:29pm
ABC News’ Amy Robach reports:

Millions of Americans, even those in top professions, say they go to work in fear of bosses and colleagues because of adult bullying.

“It was very difficult to walk into the operating room and be calm if you just had somebody take the top of your head off,” said one neurosurgeon whom ABC News is not identifying. “It was clearly humiliating. He also threatened us in terms of our jobs on a regular basis.”

She said those two years spent being bullied by her boss were “unadulterated misery and hell.”

According to a recent survey by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, adult bullying affects an estimated 12 million Americans in the workplace — nearly a third more women than men.

Jane Pratt, the editor in chief of “xoJane,” said that earlier in her career, she’d suffered for years from intense bullying by her boss.

“One time, I remember being in a conference room with a bunch of other people around and he was yelling at me so fiercely … his face was red and he was yelling at me so much that I started to feel like maybe I was going to faint because it was too much,” she said. “I felt like I couldn’t breathe. I felt like I was going to faint.”

Jill Brooke, author of “The Need to Say No,” has studied adult bullying and said it had almost become accepted office behavior.

“It is becoming an epidemic in the workplace because people are responding to their fear of losing their jobs and status quo as a result,” Brooke said. “As a result, they consider this behavior survival of the fittest.”

The neurosurgeon said her level of anxiety was constant.

“I ate constantly,” she said. “I gained a tremendous amount of weight — probably 40 to 50 pounds.”

Brooke said bullies respond to resistance, so victims should speak up — and of course build documentation. She said victims should also build consensus with others because when it comes to combating a bully, strength is in numbers.

Pratt said victims should also learn from their mistakes.

“That was a big part of me starting xoJane with Say Media,” she said. “I knew that I could hire people and they would be treated in a really, really respectful way. … You have to set the tone. … Nice works. It really does.”
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Re: Allstate Protects Their Bullies

Unread postby RatPak11 » Fri Oct 18, 2013 4:33 am ... 64529.html

What To Do If A Bully Targets You
Posted: 10/02/2013 6:05 am
Susan Krauss Whitbourne
Professor of Psychology

Yes, you've read this title correctly and yes, you're still in the "Post 50" column in HuffPost. Bullying isn't just for kids. Although we have no estimates on its prevalence in the adult population, we do know that being teased or poked fun at by co-workers, family members, neighbors, or acquaintances is a highly stressful experience.

One of the few studies on adult bullying was carried out by a Danish team investigating workplace stress. University of Copenhagen researcher Annie Hogh and colleagues (2012) sampled over 1,000 workers from 55 workplaces to learn about the impact of workplace bullying on physiological and psychological measures of stress. They defined workplace bullying as negative interpersonal acts on the job which victims cannot cope with or control. The participants in the study rated the extent to which they experienced workplace bullying in the form of social isolation, direct harassment, intimidating behavior, work-related criticism, and physical violence. They rated their psychological stress levels in terms of the extent to which they experienced intrusive thoughts, avoidance behavior, and hyper-arousal. The researchers also measured the levels of cortisol (the stress hormone).

All forms of workplace bullying were stressful. The kind of bullying that caused the most stress involved outright harassment and intimidating behavior. However, the subtler form of bullying in which co-workers engage in social isolation of the target proved highly stressful as well. If you've ever been ostracized, you know how painful it can be. You assume that the shunning is somehow your fault. It shows that you must truly have some fatal flaw if others are going to purposefully stay away from you. Perhaps the experience triggers old memories from your pre-teen or teen years, when the cool kids in the class refused to include you in their plans and activities. Unfortunately, the more you question yourself, the more you feel you deserve to be left out, and the more your doubts become self-perpetuating. Also unfortunately, social isolation may be stage 1 of what your co-workers have planned for you, and over time their behavior becomes even more abusive. As they become emboldened by the fact that no one is stopping them, their behavior escalates to outright ridicule, humiliation, and aggressive acts.

Even if the bullying never reaches this point, the stress you're feeling can have a host of unhappy outcomes. Your health suffers, you feel depressed, your self-esteem takes a nose dive, and you may be so preoccupied that you can't think clearly while at work. Instead of focusing on the tasks you need to perform, you're wondering whether someone is poking fun at you behind your back. It's possible that you start slipping up, and your mistakes or slower level of output leads your boss to criticize you as well. Should your co-workers see what's happening, their behavior will be reinforced, and the taunting will only intensify.

The second form of workplace bullying involves uncivil or rude treatment by your supervisors. They may not intentionally be trying to shame or harm you, but instead be sending comments your way that have the same net result. In an experimental simulation on college students, Quinnipiac University psychologist Gary Giumetti and colleagues shared either supportive or uncivil, rude, or sarcastic emails from "supervisors" while the students completed a math task. Students who received the critical emails performed more poorly than those who received supportive emails. According to the theory underlying the study, supervisors who berate their employees for their lack of productivity actually contribute to their becoming less productive in the future by sapping them of mental energy.

Most supervisors probably don't intentionally harass their employees; in fact, if they did, they'd be subject to rebuke from their own bosses. However, they may fail to take the time to examine their wording carefully enough to avoid getting a sensitive employee's nose out of joint. After the initial exposure to a harsh email, whatever the intent of the author, the result is a worker whose mental resources become drained. This can be enough to turn an average worker into one who makes mistakes or worse, develops chronic stress-related health problems.

What do you do if someone in the workplace is bullying you? The first step is to recognize the warning signs in terms of your own stress levels. Are you feeling tired, anxious, or just generally distracted? Have you stopped looking forward to going to work or perhaps started to dread actually entering the office, store, or factory floor? Are you eating more or less, drinking more or less alcohol, getting in fights at home, and having difficulty with your sleep? These signs that something is wrong may lead you to be able to pinpoint the cause as being due to the way coworkers or supervisors are treating you.

Step #2 is to conduct a realistic assessment of your situation. It's quite possible that you're right, and someone is intentionally engaging in those negative interpersonal acts. However, try to take a step back. Are those potentially-snubbing fellow workers gathering around the water cooler really talking about you or purposefully leaving you out? Maybe they just want to share some gossip among themselves. Perhaps they don't think you're interested in the topic of conversation whether it's the local sports team, which brand of baby diapers to use, or the latest world news. It's also possible that they're trying to soothe each other's feelings about something completely unrelated to you, not realizing that they're doing it at your expense. That boss sending you emails littered with exclamation points and capital letters ("GET IT DONE NOW!!!") may just have bad "nettiquete," or maybe he or she is being terrorized by the higher-ups and doesn't mean to humiliate or scold you. An email that may seem sarcastic to you ("I wish you'd get that done today") only seems sarcastic when read with the wrong intonation ("I wish you'd get it done [sigh, eye roll] TODAY"). Maybe your boss was in a hurry and forgot to say "Thanks" or "Please."

If you take these two steps and still feel bullied, option #3 is to preserve your physical and mental health by seeking consultation. Depending on the size and nature of your company, there may be someone you can turn to for confidential advice. This person may recommend some sort of intervention for the taunting office-mates or uncivil supervisor that could include a visit from the human resources department talking about the dangers of workplace bullying. If you are being bullied, you may be reluctant to ask for such a seemingly radical solution, but when done correctly, the intervention should seem like a generalized seminar being given to everyone in the company or division of the company.

Should the bullying be coming from office-mates, and you have good relations with your boss, then it's just plain smart to confide in him or her. Otherwise, the stress that's eating away at your health and productivity will seem to have no apparent cause and you really could get in trouble.

However you decide to approach the problem, it's key that you take action to stop the bullying. While you're about it, it's also important to look out for your fellow co-workers who are being targeted by others, whether fellow employees or supervisors. At the very least, by reaching out a hand to an oppressed colleague, you'll help to create a more positive and hence, productive, workplace environment for all.

I would love to hear from you to find out if you're a target, or have been, of workplace bullying. Please take this poll and register your response: ... 64529.html
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Re: Allstate Protects Their Bullies

Unread postby RatPak11 » Wed Feb 19, 2014 2:56 pm ... -bad-boss/

LEADERSHIP | 1/20/2014 @ 6:31PM
How To Handle A Bad Boss: 7 Strategies For 'Managing Up'
Margie Warrell, Contributor

If you’ve got a lousy boss right now you have my sympathy. Truly. It can really siphon the enjoyment from what might otherwise be a rewarding role, leave you feeling undervalued, and wondering whether you should begin searching for something new. But before you start planning an exit strategy, it would be wise to rethink how you can better manage the boss you already have –for all their flaws and shortcomings.

Having worked with numerous not-so-inspiring bosses in my corporate career, I’ve learned they provide invaluable opportunities for developing executive leadership skills and learning ‘what not to do’ when managing people who work for you. You just have to be proactive in looking for them and ready to practice some real self-leadership.

New research has found that being overworked is not the reason people leave their jobs. A Danish study of 4,500 public service workers has provided credence to the adage that “people don’t leave jobs, they leave managers.” According to psychologist Matias Brødsgaard Grynderup, one of the researchers behind the study, “We may have a tendency to associate depression and stress with work pressure and workload; however, our study shows that the workload actually has no effect on workplace depression.”

However fixed in their ways your boss may be, you can always learn ways to better manage him or her. The secret is to “manage up” without them ever realizing you are doing it. So rather than think of your boss as your boss, think of them as a difficult client – one you have to figure out how to work with if you want to get ahead, even if you’d rather not.

Hopefully the strategies below will help you on your way. Underpinning each of them is a commitment to take responsibility for your own success, regardless of the different (and difficult) personalities you will inevitably have to encounter throughout your working life.

1. Know their ‘Why’: Identify prime motivations.

The better you understand what your boss does, and more importantly, why, the better positioned you are to deliver results, manage expectations, and avoid lose:lose situations. Try to put yourself in their shoes and see the world, and your workplace, as they might.

What does he care about?
What keeps him up at night?
What would he love more of and what would he love less of on a daily basis?
What frightens him?
How much importance does he place on impressing others?
How does he measure success and what does he think about failure?

When you know what drives your boss (even if your boss may not be fully conscious of it), you can speak to “his listening,” frame your opinions and use language in ways that line up with his core values, concerns and priorities.

2. Support their success: Work around their weaknesses.

While it may sound counter intuitive to support a bad boss in becoming more successful, there is absolutely nothing to be gained by making him look bad, going to war or facilitating his (or her) failure. If he is as bad as you think, he will likely do a pretty good job of that all by himself. Exposing his incompetence will only compound your own misery and may even damage your reputation.

One way is to help your boss focus on his natural strengths. Another is to proactively work around his weaknesses. If you know you have a boss who’s disorganized, then help him to be on top of things rather than whining about his lack of organizational skills. If you know your boss is often late to meetings, offer to kick off the next meeting for him. If he tends to change his mind frequently, or is outright forgetful, be sure to document interactions so you can refer back to them if he ever contradicts himself. If you know your boss is slow to respond, continue to work on a project while you wait to hear back from him. Making yourself indispensable and someone your boss can rely on to help him do his job is a valuable asset when you start to look to ‘what’s next?’

By doing what you can to help your boss succeed, you lay a solid foundation for greater success yourself. It may not be an immediate reward, but in the long run, you can never lose by helping others do better than they otherwise would.

3. Take the high road: Your “Personal Brand” is riding on it.

Never let your boss’s bad behavior be an excuse for your own. All too often, people start feeling entitled to slack off, take longer and longer lunches, lose interest or stop performing well because of their bad boss. Don’t do it. Keep your mind focused on top performance. Complain to your spouse or your friends all you want, but when in the office or workplace, stay upbeat and engaged. Actually handling a difficult boss well can really set you apart. You never know who is watching or listening but be assured, people who can open or close future opportunities for you are doing just that!

Evening the score by working slower, taking excessive “mental health” days or longer lunches doesn’t do you any favors and can hurt your own self more in the long run than any irritation or trouble you cause for your boss. On top of that, it may only put you behind in your workload and build a case for your boss to give you the old heave-ho before you’re ready to go. So if your boss is a shouter, don’t react by shouting back. If they are petty or small minded, don’t descend to smallness yourself. Rather maintain a calm and professional demeanor in dealing with your difficult boss or let your emotions get the better of you. Literally. As Gandhi wrote “Be the change you want to see in the world.” In this case, act like the leader you wish your boss was.

If you feel you’ve run out of options for dealing with him reasonably, then don’t go rumor-mongering or bad-mouthing him to everyone within earshot. That will ultimately say more about you than it does about your boss (and not things you’d want said!) Rather, follow proper procedures for registering complaints with Human Resources or with higher-level superiors, documenting each step of the way.

4. Speak up: Give your boss a chance to respond.

Early into my career, I left a good job with a global consulting firm because I had a lousy boss and a toxic work environment. Upon leaving, the HR lead – a senior partner at this organization – asked to meet with me to find out why I was leaving. I shared how undervalued I had felt, how the promises made to me upon employment had not been met and how little accountability there was for my colleagues. He was surprised and disturbed and asked if there was anything he could do to make me change my mind. Apparently I’d been ear-marked a hi-po (which would have been nice to have known before then!), but by this point it was too late. I’d already made other plans, hoping for a better work environment, and a better boss.

The lesson for me was this: have the courage to speak up rather than cower in silence for fear of an awkward conversation. The truth is that I’d been too cowardly to address my concerns with my boss or to go around her. Admittedly I was young (mid-twenties) and inexperienced, but if I knew then what I do now, it would have been that I owed it to myself, and to my boss at the time, to have at least voiced my concerns, offered up some possible solutions and engaged in a conversation about how we could have improved the situation. It may not have changed a thing, but at least I could have known that I at least gave her a chance.

So just because it may be easier to say nothing, to just ‘suffer quietly’ or complain loudly to colleagues or to head for the exit as I ultimately did, you at least owe your boss the opportunity to respond. Don’t prejudge and assume they aren’t able to take feedback, or don’t care how miserable you are. When you approach them with respect and with a genuine desire to make things work better, you can open the door to whole new levels of trust, collaboration and outcomes. A door that will remain permanently closed otherwise.

5. Know their preferences: Adapt to them.

Observe your boss’s behavioral style, preferences and pet peeves. Is he fast-paced and quick to make decisions? Is he slow to think about things, needing time to process information? How does he like to communicate – via e-mail, in person drop-ins, or lengthy memos? The more you can match your style to your boss’s style when communicating, the more he will really hear what you’re saying.

If you’ve ever done any personality assessments such as Myers-Briggs or DISC, then see if your boss has as well and find out what they are. It can help you adapt your style and spare a lot of strain. Working with his preferences is an obvious way of managing your boss without his ever knowing it, and it’s a key leadership skill to develop regardless of the kind of boss you are working for.

6. Don’t be intimidated by a bully: Stand tall, never cower!

People who bully get their power from those who respond by cowering and showing fear. If your boss is a yeller, a criticizer, or a judge – stand firm. If you’re doing the best job you can do, keep your head held high and don’t give him the satisfaction of pushing you about. Rather ask questions, seek to understand, and work to defuse a difficult situation instead of cowering or responding in anger. It takes practice, but over time you will get better at it and he will look elsewhere for his power kick.

If you feel compelled to call your boss on his behavior, go ahead but do so with a cool head and prepare in advance for the ensuing fallout. It could get ugly so think things through beforehand. What are your options? Who are your allies? Have you documented his behavior? Can you deal with the possibility of the worst outcome? Sure, it’s important to stand strong, but be smart about it. As I wrote in Stop Playing Safe, “Sometimes you have to go out on a limb and do something where the risks are high. But before you climb out, be sure you’ve managed the risks as best you can and set up a safety net should you fall.”

7. Be Proactive: Do your research before jumping ship.

Of course the best way to manage a bad boss is not to have one in the first place. So whenever you are looking to move into a new role in the same company or move to another organization all together, invest some time to get a sense of the culture, the leadership and the sort of management practices that are tolerated and supported. If you are moving internally, make sure you do your networking ahead of time to get a sense of both the environment within the team you might be moving to, and those who are creating it. Are they leaders who create an environment where people are inspired and supported to work hard, or do they incite fear about what will happen if people don’t?

If you are moving to a new organization, do your research to make sure you’re not jumping from the frying pan into the fire. Sometimes in our desperation to escape a toxic work environment we fail to take notice of the warning signs that the new job we’re taking will only be worse. Have a coffee with whoever you know at the new company to get a sense of the culture, employee engagement, moral, and management style. Investing a few hours up front could spare you a few years of frustration.

Margie Warrell is the bestselling author of Stop Playing Safe (Wiley) and Find Your Courage (McGraw-Hill), a keynote speaker and mother of four untidy children. A regular media commentator, you can watch Margie’s TV interviews on topics like this on her YouTube Channel. She’d also love to connect with you on Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn.


Angel Doc 4 weeks ago
Ds Domination

Youcef DRIDI 3 weeks ago
@ Margie,
The article is full of good ideas but I would not consider a bad boss, someone who’s disorganized, a bit of a yeller, or someone who shows weaknesses in certain areas of his role.
Performance is often a tricky question, and you may ask 10 CEOs what their own definition is, you’d end up with 10 different answers. My own definition of performance: doing the right product/service, the best possible way, at an optimal cost.
I followed your proposed strategies at many different occasions in my career, only to realize that frustration and deception was growing in correlation with the efforts I deployed to ease a bad boss situation.
There is one explanation to this: managers are generally not judged on their personal output. Rather, most bosses are judged on how well they’ve hired, coached, and motivated their people, individually and collectively—all of which shows up in the results.
This leads to very controversial KPIs to measure their performance, and very controversial methods they use to measure individual performance of their subordinates.
A bad boss is a master of manipulation, he has many faces, and knows how to appear friendly, social, and fun-loving. The bad boss usually has attractive qualities that he uses to further manipulate his preys.
Of course, certain people are more vulnerable than others, but we are all potentially at risk of becoming victims to the repetitive threats, insults, humiliation and criticism that are the bad boss ‘s trademarks. Even so-called ‘strong personalities’ can fall into their trap, especially when emotional dependency is at play – which can occur in many kinds of business environements.
From the moment a relationship with a bad boss begins and he becomes aware of his influence on the other, he can begin the process of devaluation. He takes advantage of our faults and failures, and strikes when we feel weak.
Unmasking bad bosses is essential for a corporation to achieve a good level of performance. Then the options are quite limited: either you can get rid of them, or you have to leave the place (the sooner the better).

Joel Diñeiro 3 weeks ago
I know out there the job market is scaring, but if you have all of that skills maybe, just maybe, you deserve (and can get) a better job.
Simple example about the 6 point: I made that in 2 different jobs (one in marketing & advertising, the other in retail) the results where horrid… I fight against an incompetent general manager (lousy, the late, late man, more worried about power fights with his own sales team, editors or marketing managers) AND with the CEO favor for me, I ended quieting, because the entire company culture was poisoned and I had better prospects. “Healing” the company (in this case) was worth a lot more that what I earned, so I search for a better job.

Lahnna Epolito 2 weeks ago
#4 is really hard for employees, especially when they are on the young and/or inexperienced end. But it is a necessary evil. At some time or another there will be a need to address an issue and have an uncomfortable conversation, so it pays to practice.
I used to get treated poorly because of my age, and looking younger than I actually am on top of that. I combated this by trying to be ahead of the game, asking questions, learning company/brand vocabulary, and so forth.
Even now I sometimes feel unsure of myself. I wonder if maybe I am being too sensitive. When that happens I switch roles mentally. If I would be upset with myself for addressing an employee in the way my manager addressed me, then it instills more confidence in me. And then I work toward prevention or reconciliation, or both.

Kelly Kirby 2 weeks ago
Why does the article assume that the boss is a man?

Margie Warrell, Contributor 2 weeks ago
Hi Kelly, early in the article I say he (or she!) but for simplicity sake i refer to a boss in the masculine to spare writing he or she repeatedly. Obviously female bosses can be bad managers too. There was no gender bias here above that of just using the masculine reference.

Mary 2 weeks ago
I appreciate this article and it helped me with some emotional and mental sagging for the day. However, I think there are other aspects that can create a “bad boss”.
A bad boss could create policies that are outside the corporate policies, not allow overtime, allow the company to function short staffed, runs the office with the sole purpose to increae their salary in anyway possible, rather than making sure employees are compensated appropriately, placing blame on the lower heirarcy employees for their own flaws, being late to work if at all, etc.
I agree that being a bad boss doesn’t/shouldn’t necessarily have anything to do with personality or interpersonal exchange; however, I do believe that attitude has so much to do with it. And not just attitude; if the boss is just a mean, uncaring person who projects an heir of rude arrogence with a disregard for the well being of the employees as well as the effeciency of staff, they are a bad boss.
A bad boss is someone who brings down morale in the work place and doesn’t care.
t care.
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Re: Allstate Protects Their Bullies

Unread postby RatPak11 » Wed Apr 09, 2014 1:22 am ... a09e92a2f1

Legislating workplace bullying
Clark Hill PLC
Stephanie K. Rawitt
March 10 2014

Anti-bullying rules have become a norm in our schools, but do general anti-bullying laws belong in our workplace? Federal and state laws already protect a vast percentage of our workforce from workplace discrimination: gender, national origin, religion, ancestry, age and disability laws have been designed to prevent/protect qualifying employees from discrimination and harassment in the workplace. Some state laws also protect sexual orientation and gender identity. However, outside of various common law claims such as assault, battery and intentional infliction of emotional distress, there are no laws on the books which statutorily protect all employees from workplace bullying.

There is no question that bullying in any form is harmful to the victim. Our news has been filled with stories of school bullying which can lead to devastating results including suicide. Research on workplace bullying began in the 1980s in Sweden and the field has exploded. A Google search will reveal countless articles and books on the subject, examining workplace bullying from all angles, and most specifically exploring the psychological impact and harm harassment in the workplace can cause.

The US is actually the last of the western democracies to consider laws forbidding workplace bullying. Scandinavian nations as well as many of the European Union nations have explicit anti-bullying laws in place. In 2011 Australia passed the first criminal law prohibiting workplace bullying.

Anti-bullying legislation has been getting significant attention over the past few months in the US in the wake of the Miami Dolphins bullying scandal which ended with one player checking himself into a hospital for psychiatric help, having been subjected to pervasive bullying by his team mates. Just this past week the Dolphins helped introduce the Safe Athletics Education and Training Act of 2014 to the Florida State Legislature. If passed, the act would prohibit bullying in intercollegiate athletic events and would also require professional sports franchises to take reasonable measures to prevent abusive conduct. While this particular bill focuses upon the athletic world, there is a grass roots campaign to encourage all states to enact workplace anti-bullying legislation.

Since 2003, 25 states have introduced workplace bullying legislation that would allow workers to sue for harassment, without requiring a showing of discrimination. The proposed legislation was born in 2001 by Suffolk University Professor of Law David Yamada, who drafted the text of the Healthy Workplace Bill (HWB). The HWB was introduced in California in 2003 and, thereafter, New York. The bill has successfully passed committee votes in Illinois, Washington, New York and Connecticut; passed House floor votes in New York for a study only bill and passed both houses in Illinois as a Joint Resolution. In 2010, the Senates in New York and Illinois passed the bill. It is likely only a matter of time before the HWB becomes law in one or more states. It is the hope of HWB supporters that eventually the HWB will become law in all states, just like the school bullying laws. See, Healthy Workplace Bill.

What is workplace bullying? It is defined as the repeated, health-harming mistreatment (i.e. verbal abuse, offensive conduct that is threatening or humiliating, work interference) of one or more persons by one or more perpetrators. Basically, it is workplace harassment. Supporters of the HWB maintain that 49% of adult Americans have been bullied or witnesses bullying at work and that 80% of workplace bullying is "legal," i.e. not covered by existing discrimination laws. Despite these statistics, only about 56% of companies implement workplace bullying policies, according to a study conducted by the Society for Human Resources Management (SHRM). HWB supporters believe that the existence of legislation is the most efficient way to get all employers to enact these policies.

What would anti-bullying legislation look like? In January of 2013 an anti-bullying bill was introduced in Massachusetts. Under this bill, if an employer is found to have created an abusive work environment, the court could order relief similar to the relief available under Title VII and its progeny: back pay, front pay, medical expenses, removal of the offending party from the work premises, reinstatement of the bullied employee, emotional distress damages, punitive damages and attorney's fees. Employer defenses are similar to those under Title VII as well. An employer can escape liability by showing it exercised reasonable care to prevent and promptly correct any actionable behavior.

Critics of the anti-bullying legislation contend that these laws would encourage frivolous lawsuits. While most employers as well as employees agree that there is no place for bullying, harassment or mistreatment in the workplace, protecting workers from bullying while also shielding employers from scores of meritless claims is daunting. The proposed legislation is so expansive that even the disgruntled employee would become a potential plaintiff. Filling the courts with claims of "he was mean to me" or "she doesn't like me" seems reckless and frivolous.

Another issue with anti-bullying laws and policies is the possibility that they violate the National Labor Relations Act. In Hispanics United of Buffalo, Inc., 359 NLRB No. 37 (2012), the employer discharged four employees after they posted comments about a co-worker on Facebook. The employer justified the discharge using its anti-bullying policy. The National Labor Relations Board found that the four employees were engaged in concerted protected activity because they were discussing complaints about their performance. The Board held that the employer violated Section 8(a)(1) of the Act when it discharged the four employees for bullying and ordered the employer to reinstate the employees. Employers may avoid this result by carefully drafting anti-bullying policies and consulting with experienced counsel before taking disciplinary action against employees accused of bullying.

Enactment of anti-bullying legislation could very well be one of the biggest things to happen in the world of employment law since the passage of Title VII given its wide-spread applicability to all employees. If anti-bullying laws are to become a reality, state lawmakers will need to carefully craft the statute in an attempt to both protect employees from harmful workplace bullying while also shielding employers from an avalanche of frivolous litigation.
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Re: Allstate Protects Their Bullies

Unread postby RatPak11 » Wed Apr 09, 2014 1:27 am ... s-a-bully/

Is Your Boss A Bully?
Carol Kinsey Goman

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.

By definition, workplace bullying is the repeated, health-harming mistreatment of an employee in the form of verbal abuse or behaviors that are threatening, intimidating, or humiliating. Bullies at work practice psychological violence. They yell, insult, throw tantrums, steal credit, spread rumors, withhold crucial information, and/or socially isolate their targets by excluding them. The body language of bullies includes staring, glaring, or totally ignoring the target when he/she speaks. Bullies often engage in aggressive finger pointing, invade personal space and use touch as a measure of control (a bone-crushing handshake) or a means to patronize (a pat on the head).

• According to a 2010 Workplace Bullying Institute Survey, 13.7 million adults reported being bullied at work.

• Bullies are typically bosses. In fact, 72% of bullies outrank their “targets.”

• Bullying is not illegal unless the target is a member of a status-protected group (due to gender, race, age, etc.) and the bully is not a member.

• The financial damage bullies do to their organizations is often undetected, but can be seen in the cost of increased turnover and absenteeism and in decreased employee engagement and collaboration.

Some bullies are put into leadership positions because they appear to be smart, ambitious, results-oriented and “take-charge.” All of which may be true (as in Brenda’s case), but in addition to those more positive characteristics, most bullies lack empathy. They seem immune to the suffering of others.

Dr. A.R. Mohammad, an addiction expert and adjunct professor of addiction medicine at the University of Southern California, offers this perspective: “Addicts have some inherent characteristics. They have an inflated self-esteem and a false sense of entitlement. These characteristics may lead to bullying. Furthermore, occupation is one of the environmental risk factors of addiction. People who have high-pressured jobs, are under a lot of stress, and have easy access to drugs and alcohol are more prone to develop addiction. Bullying would be another way to cope with that stress.”

So how can you tell if you’re working for a bully or just a tough boss?

One way is to realize that tough bosses treat people equitably. They may be hard on everyone, especially during a crunch time, but they tend to ease up when the crisis is over. Bullies target only a few, and their bullying is relentless. Another way to gauge whether or not you are being bullied is by monitoring your mental and physical reactions. Targets of constant bullying often become physically ill. Especially prevalent are cardiovascular and gastrointestinal diseases, and a common first sign is hypertension. Targets also suffer emotional distress, including self-doubt, plummeting self-esteem, and depression.

Worn down mentally and physically, it’s no wonder that when it comes to dealing with bullies in the workplace, a lot of targets don’t even try. They simply quit their jobs.

If you are being bullied at work, here are few tips:

1. Realize you are being bullied and it’s not about you and your work. It’s about dominance and control.

2. Take a stand from the beginning. (This is the most vital tip as targets suffer added pain and shame from not standing up to the bully in the first place.)

3. Stay professional. Speak calmly and confidently, and make your position clear.

3. Document and confide in others you trust.

4. Report it to Human Resources if the bullying continues.

I’m the co-author of Every Body’s Talking a new book on body language for children in grades four through eight. The book is filled with tips for projecting self-confidence and for understanding and responding to the nonverbal signals from teachers, parents, and friends. But that’s not the main reason I wrote it. Learning to read body language is also an effective way to develop empathy for others – and in turn, hopefully, reduce the bullying that has become such a problem on grade school campuses. Because, in the schoolyard or in the workplace, bullying is a way to exert control over others through intimidation. And without a doubt, children who are bullies on the playground grow up to become bullies in the boardroom.

Carol Kinsey Goman, Ph.D. ( is an expert on the link between body language and leadership effectiveness.
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Re: Allstate Protects Their Bullies

Unread postby RatPak11 » Sun Apr 13, 2014 9:11 pm ... -the-rise/

Bullying at Work: Workplace Mobbing is on the Rise

Mobbing is “bullying on steroids,” a horrifying new trend whereby a bully enlists co-workers to collude in a relentless campaign of psychological terror against a hapless target.

Targets are usually anyone who is “different” from the organizational norm. Usually victims are competent, educated, resilient, outspoken, challenge the status quo, are more empathic or attractive and tend to be women, aged 32 to 55. Targets also can be racially different or part of a minority group.

The target receives ridicule, humiliation, and eventually, removal from the workplace. It leaves the victim reeling with no idea what happened or why. It takes away a person’s safety in the world, dignity, identity and belonging and damages his or her mental and physical health. The effects also radiate outward toward the target’s partner, family, friends and even community.

Because an employee is being targeted and criticized, he or she may be seen as a “troublemaker” by others and thus be ignored and isolated by otherwise OK people. Former allies can thus turn against him and he is left socially isolated. They think: “well, he’s being criticized by management, there must be something wrong with him and I don’t want to be tarred by the same brush!”

Gossip and innuendo spread behind closed doors before the target is aware of what’s happening, as previously loyal co-workers are enlisted to provide personal information that substantiates damaging rumors. Often the person instigating the mobbing is emotionally immature and threatened in some way by the target. People with personality disorders often employed tactics such as “splitting,” which pits members of a team against each other in order to exact revenge against a perceived slight or insult by the target.

At least 30 percent of bullying is mobbing — and the tendency is rising.

In Australia, a government inquiry revealed that calls about workplace bullying had increased by 70 percent in three years. Statistics show that bullying affects one in three employees; what is really worrying is that one in two have witnessed bullying but have done nothing about it. Moreover, the actual incidence of bullying is likely to be much higher: for every case reported, eight to 20 cases are going unreported (Faure-Brac, 2012).

Mobbing is more likely to occur when a number of workplace factors are present. Understanding what they are can help to protect yourself from staying in, or taking a job in a toxic organization. For example, certain industries facing increased financial pressure because market demand is on the wane are more mobbing-prone. These organizations are driven by the dollar and accountable only to shareholders and directors. This creates toxic environments where managers turn a blind eye to bullying and mobbing and may even encourage it (Duffy & Sperry, 2013).

Organizations that are driven by bureaucracy, e.g., government departments, are arguably the most toxic. They appear to have policies and procedures to ensure a safe workplace, but they will redefine bullying as a “personality conflict” and end up offering no real protection. In essence, bad behavior is tolerated and left to escalate. The 2012 film, “Murder By Proxy: How America Went Postal” is a fascinating portrayal of the ultimate in toxic workplaces.

In contrast, healthy organizations are accountable to a wider range of shareholders including customers, staff and community. They also have values that are centered on caring for others (Duffy & Sperry, 2013).

The best way to deal with workplace mobbing is to increase resilience, practice self-care and get out as soon as possible. It is often impossible to win against organizations that tacitly support mobbing. Five steps that you must take to ensure recovery are:

Document everything in detail. From the earliest signs of something “not quite right,” even if it’s just a gut feeling, keep a journal of all the incidents you experience. The more evidence you have, the better your recourse to legal action later.

Give yourself space and time to figure things out. Seek someone in authority you can trust at work to disclose to. Seeking redress from the organisation might not be a safe first step for you to take. See a doctor for stress leave and a worker’s compensation claim.

Get a good recovery team to stop the isolation. A good clinical psychologist will help you develop recovery strategies, liaise with your doctor and lawyer, write a psychological injury report and advocate for you. A good lawyer will help you initiate legal action. A good doctor will treat bullying’s medical repercussions. Family and friends will understand, believe and support you.

Make self-care a priority.Focus on what you love. Engage in a daily spiritual practice and follow good diet and exercise plans.

Engage in meaningful life activities. Set new goals. Undertake creative pursuits. Focus on fun and laughter.

Victims of bullying who want more detail on how to protect themselves can learn more about developing effective strategies against bullies by downloading Dr Sophie Henshaw’s exclusive report:


Duffy, M. & Sperry, L. (2013). Overcoming Mobbing: A Recovery Guide for Workplace Aggression and Bullying. USA: Oxford University Press.

Faure-Brac, J. (2012). A Slow Poison: Behind The Alarming Statistics On Workplace Bullying Are Personal Stories Of Grief And Hardship, Revealed During A Parliamentary Inquiry. ... ison1.ashx
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Re: Allstate Protects Their Bullies

Unread postby RatPak11 » Sun Apr 13, 2014 9:17 pm


EMOTIONAL ABUSE in the workplace.
"Ganging up" by co-workers, subordinates or superiors, to force someone out of the workplace through rumor, innuendo, intimidation, humiliation, discrediting, and isolation.
Malicious, nonsexual, nonracial, general harassment.

Other expressions for MOBBING are:

Psychological terror or aggression
Hostile behaviors at work
Workplace trauma
Emotional violence

We consider MOBBING an emotional injury that impacts a target's mental and physical health. MOBBING is a workplace safety and health issue.

This site informs about the MOBBING phenomenon. You find information about the book "MOBBING: Emotional Abuse in the American Workplace" and information about services and resources that help targets of mobbing or organizations deal with the phenomenon in a constructive fashion.

Dr. Heinz Leymann (, an industrial psychologist and medical scientist with an M.D. in psychiatry, has pioneered the research on MOBBING in Sweden in the early eighties. MOBBING has since become a household word in several European countries.

The book "MOBBING: Emotional Abuse in the American Workplace" by Noa Zanolli Davenport Ph.D., Ruth Distler Schwartz, and Gail Pursell Elliott is partially based on Dr. Leymann's work. The book and this site are primarily intended as a self-help tool and a resource for targets of workplace mobbing. We also address responsible management and human resources personnel, unions, health care providers, insurance agencies, and lawyers as well as families and friends of targets of mobbing. Above all, we encourage preventive, timely and appropriate action.

Since the publication of MOBBING in 1999, we have received only positive feedback.We acknowledge the hundreds of persons who gratefully wrote to us. They confirmed that our initial intent to offer a self-help book was met.

Awareness is slowly growing in the U.S. and in Canada about the darker side of work and the devastating effects that mobbing and bullying can have on the self, health, organizations and society. Our colleagues in North America, though still rather few, do their part to contribute to the growing interest. For example: Three conferences on the topic have been organized in the U.S. since 2000, in California, Massachusetts and Iowa; the Department of Environmental Quality for the State of Oregon has established the first anti-mobbing policy in the U.S.; efforts to add new anti-mobbing legislation are under way in California, other states and in Canada; and several new Internet self-help and advice groups and websites address specific professional groups or aspects of incivility at work. In the aftermath of the Columbine and other school shooting tragedies, the media has increasingly discussed bullying in the schools, thus also raising awareness of adult bullying/mobbing in the workplace.

The authors continue to present about workplace mobbing to the media, corporations, and professional organizations; and Noa Zanolli Davenport has also been retained as expert witness in legal cases. And, last but not least, our book has been used as required reading in several college courses.

Parallel to these developments in the U.S., pro-action keeps growing around the world. For example, a major international conference was held in early 2002 in Australia. In January 2002, France enacted an anti-mobbing law. In, Canada, the province of Quebec, has adopted anti-harassment/mobbing legislation. In Columbia, anti-harassment legislation has been enacted in February 2006. We are proud to say that our book and website were quoted by the congressmen who sponsored the bill before the Columbian Congress. Most importantly, in Germany, workplace mobbing has been acknowledged in the medical establishment as an ill-making condition and is recognized in the European Union as an occupational safety and health risk. Our book has raised interest in Japan and Turkey and translated editions are now also available. Read the Preface for the 3rd printing (August 2005).
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Re: Allstate Protects Their Bullies

Unread postby RatPak11 » Sun Apr 13, 2014 9:35 pm ... amson.html

an article by Susan Rae Sampson
(Susan Rae Sampson, WSTLA EAGLE member is with Sampson & Wilson, Inc., P.S., in Renton, Washington. Ms. Samspon is a Ninth Congressional District Representative on the WSTLA Board of Governors.)

Every employment lawyer has heard the complaint, "They brought in a new manager and he is trying to get rid of me.
I have never been written up for anything! My sales statistics are as good as anybody else's, but all of a sudden I can't do anything right.
I went to Human Resources, and they just acted like I'd done something wrong, and put me on this schedule for weekly meetings with my supervisor.
I used to love my job, but I can hardly stand going there any more.
My doctor gave me a prescription for Paxil..."

And every employment lawyer has had to reply, one time or another, "You are an employee at will. They can let you go for any reason, or no reason at all, except for the illegal reasons, and none of the illegal reasons seem to apply in your case: you have no contract, no collective bargaining agreement. You aren't a whistleblower who has gone to the government with complaints of illegal activity, and you haven't complained to L&I about an injury, or about safety or wage and hour issues. Nothing suggests that you are the victim of discrimination on the basis of age over 40, race, sex, ancestry, creed, marital status, or disability. There is nothing I can do to help."

"But this is a hostile working environment!"
And so it is, but it isn't necessarily against the law. To management, it is "progressive discipline": every act of the employee that could possibly be treated as malfeasance, misfeasance or nonfeasance is documented and treated as cumulative. To the employee, it is unfair, demoralizing and counterproductive, but except for "hostile working environment," employees have not had a single word like "discrimination" to express the concept.

Now several writers have put a name on the concept, and have called it "mobbing." The lead commentator was Dr. Heinz Leymann, who conducted extensive studies in Scandinavia and who published studies descriptive of the "mobbing" process.

In the United States, Dr. Noa Zanolli Davenport and two colleagues, have published "Mobbing, Emotional Abuse in the American Workplace," copyright 1999, Civil Publishing Society, Ames, Iowa. Dr. Davenport has become an expert witness in the identification of "mobbing."

And Dr.Kenneth Westhues, a Canadian professor, was astonished to find himself in a role that had changed from "mobber" to "mobbee." He recounts his experiences from home, where he sits on paid administrative leave while the relevant committees run through their processes of firing him. He tells it all, with humor, in "Eliminating Professors, A Guide to the Dismissal Process," copyright 1998 Kempner Collegium Publications, Queenston, Ontario. His prototypical professor who is being eliminated is Dr. "PITA," the "Pain in the Ass," who has become the victim of his employer's efforts to justify the termination of his employment.

Until "mobbing" is against the law, legal help for its victims remains somewhat collateral, off point-unions may assist, discrimination laws may have limited applicability-but some institutions are beginning to recognize and address "mobbing."

In Europe, the Swedish National board of Occupational Safety and Health has published a booklet on creating a psychologically safe environment.

In the U.S., such corporations as Levi Strauss and Saturn have implemented programs for assessing the risks of mobbing, of expressing mission statements intended to reduce incidents of mobbing, and of behaving proactively to avoid the circumstances allowing mobbing to arise. Perhaps some of these statements will become enforceable promises to the employee, but until then, the employment lawyer may be constrained to saying "I understand; you aren't alone, and here are some books to read about what's going on; but it still isn't against the law."
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Re: Allstate Protects Their Bullies

Unread postby RatPak11 » Sun Apr 13, 2014 9:40 pm ... g/00018712

Overcoming Mobbing: A Recovery Guide for Workplace Aggression & Bullying

Mobbing, as Maureen Duffy and Len Sperry explain in their new book, is a “destructive social process in which individuals, groups, or organizations target a person for ridicule, humiliation, and removal from the workplace.” It is different than bullying, Duffy and Sperry argue, but like bullying, it is ugly.

In Overcoming Mobbing: A Recovery Guide for Workplace Aggression and Bullying Duffy and Sperry, both clinicians with experience in the subfield, explain the details of different scenarios and what people can do to seek help.

As the word implies, mobbing is often on a larger scale than bullying. It might involve not just an immediate boss but higher management, long-term scheming, and a teaming of efforts to unravel an employee. Not surprisingly, this concerted effort to demoralize someone harms that person in both mind and body. Small aggressions over time, the authors write, whether overt or covert, erode an employee’s confidence in themselves and in their work. They become confused about their own contributions in the office, and begin to lose motivation to come to work at all. And that is often the plan that aggressors have in mind.

People targeted also feel betrayed by coworkers who no longer hang around or support them. At home, they distance themselves from their loved ones and no longer feel a sense of trust. They do not believe that the world is as just and as fair as they used to believe. And because someone at work has damaged their reputation through lies and false information, they worry about their future, as they know they’ll have a hard time getting good references.

ll of this can lead to sleep difficulty, headaches, coronary heart disease, and anxiety — even suicide. The most common psychological conditions associated with mobbing are depression and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

Moreover, the authors write, people< who view work as a way to increase personal value and worth, which the authors term “work orientation,” are hit hardest. They “experience more distress and disability” than those with a “job orientation” — the view that work is primarily for financial need — or a “calling orientation,” when one sees work as a way to gain meaning in life.

Zooming out, not only can mobbing have extremely negative effects on an individual level, but it also chips away at a company overall, jeopardizing perceptions and increasing the turnover rate.

In the midst of all these crises, it can be hard for victims to see the bright side, but that does not mean it is impossible. There are ways to heal and grieve and carry on, the authors explain. And one way is to retell their story, even though it may be painful to recount — or may fall on deaf ears.

Indeed, workplaces may fall into the “see no evil,” “hear no evil,” or “speak no evil” category, Duffy and Sperry write. The “see no evil” company views mobbing as employees being weak or being troublemakers; the “hear no evil” hears the story as just a dispute among employees. Meanwhile, the “speak no evil” organization does see mobbing as a problem and tries to prevent it, but does so ineffectively. Many organizations prevent the truth from being heard; perpetrators twist the situation around and put the blame on victims.

The authors suggest that a victim can seek professional help from an expert trained in mobbing, try to get reparation from their workplace or the aggressor, or attend activities outside of work. But although these suggestions are helpful, the book seems to lack detail about the potential pros and cons or outcome of each method.

Still, the book contains a lot of helpful information about mobbing as well as sources to help victims, regardless of their ethnicity, age, or religion.

And when you’ve been through a calculated attack from coworkers or higher-ups, reading that you’re not alone can be a big help.

Overcoming Mobbing: A Recovery Guide for Workplace Aggression and Bullying
Oxford University Press, January, 2014
Hardcover, 256 pages
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Re: Allstate Protects Their Bullies

Unread postby RatPak11 » Sun Apr 13, 2014 10:04 pm ... loyee-boss

How to foil the office bully
March 27, 2014|Daneen Skube

Q. A recently hired employee is being bullied by the employee who trained that person. The boss does nothing to discourage the bully. My husband thinks I should ignore it. I want to do something but not to put my job in jeopardy. The only advice I gave the new employee is to keep a log and track everything. What should I do?

A. The problem you have is not just helping the new employee but understanding how to make yourself unattractive as a target to any office bully. To avoid becoming the next victim and help the current victim, you'll have to use bully Kryptonite -- embarrassment.

Contrary to popular belief, the only emotional repellant to bullying is the possibility of embarrassment to the bully. Bullies can't stand powerlessness, and the idea that they will look bad is intolerable to them.

I feel certain that other victims of your coworker have also documented the problem. Most of the time, this makes the victim feel better but doesn't always result in a solution. The trouble is that most bullies scare everybody, including the boss and management.

Obviously, this column doesn't give legal advice. If you are planning on a legal process, documentation would be important.

When people are scared, they will let other people get away with abominable behavior. Your boss may not approve of the bully, but he probably wants to completely avoid conflict with the guy. On the other hand, your boss may be a secretly enraged guy and enjoy watching other people act out his rage.

Whatever your boss' motives, the strategy to make the bully go away is the same. The bully is going to have to worry that his behavior will make him look really bad.

Take your coworker to lunch and let the new employee know you can see what is happening. Suggest that arguing with the bully, putting up with the treatment, or documenting it may not be successful. Ask your new coworker what he or she thinks would embarrass the bully?

Here are examples of situations that will usually embarrass a bully:

1) New employee stops arguing, defending, or fighting with bully. New employee simply says, "You're right ... what would you like?" If new employee can add long neutral stare it is helpful. Now bully gets to look like jerk.

2) New employee goes into boss for "coaching" on how employee can handle problems proactively. New employee looks accountable and responsible. Bully look like problem.

3) New employee uses paraphrasing constantly with bully rather than reacting. Since new employee is just reflecting what bully is doing, bully's behavior becomes obvious and makes bully look bad.

4) New employee gives bully lots of credit for excellent training and makes it clear that new employee failing would make bully look incompetent and new employee certainly wouldn't want that.

Realize that you can only offer words of wisdom to your new coworker. If your new coworker can't put his ego to one side and use these strategies, the bully will get him fired.

The price of winning a bully war is you have to sacrifice your need to be right. Let the bully be right and watch him lose any way to keep fighting with you.

The last word(s)

Q. I love having the last word in an argument. Is there a good reason not to make it clear when a coworker is absolutely wrong?

A. Yes, if you don't enjoy waiting for the moment when your coworker gets even. Make your goal results and let others gloat over that unimportant last word.

(Daneen Skube, Ph.D., executive coach, trainer, therapist and speaker, also appears as the FOX Channel's "Workplace Guru" each Monday morning. She's the author of "Interpersonal Edge: Breakthrough Tools for Talking to Anyone, Anywhere, About Anything" (Hay House, 2006). You can contact Dr. Skube at or 1420 NW Gilman Blvd., #2845, Issaquah, WA 98027. Sorry, no personal replies.)
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Re: Allstate Protects Their Bullies

Unread postby RatPak11 » Sun Apr 13, 2014 10:24 pm ... 0tTllVdXAk

Bullying Has to Stop
April 7, 2014, 08:00:00AM.
By Jane Mundy

Sacramento, CA: Craig, a commercial truck driver, isn’t about to take bullying lying down. He believes this type of harassment should be a violation of the California labor law. Unfortunately, this type of harassment is not contrary to the California labor code, but wrongful termination is.

If not for Craig being pro-active, he wouldn’t be able to collect unemployment insurance. His boss, the owner of the trucking company, accused Craig of misconduct and fired him. Initially Unemployment Insurance denied his claim but he went before an impartial unemployment Administration Law judge who sided with him.

“That was one notch in my favor and I was able to collect backpay, but I still haven’t been paid for the week I worked, and even more important, this guy shouldn’t get away with his bullying,” says Craig. “I only worked one week for him and it was probably the worst week of my life.

“I had a delivery to make in Colorado but his truck kept breaking down before I even left. I called him a number of times but he refused to help. I called him several times again to provide tire chains when I encountered snow and ice, but he refused. Clearly it was now up to me to get the truck safe and legal for the road - I am a professional driver and I know what safety measures need to be in place. I bought chains for the truck but he didn’t reimburse me. One notch in his favor.”

When his boss became intimidating and profane over the phone, Craig called the federal Department of Transportation but he could only leave a message. (Someone returned his call - a few days ago - but Craig has yet to follow through.) “I don’t know if he singled me out, I wasn’t there long enough to know anyone besides the mechanic, and I got along fine with him,” adds Craig.

When Craig arrived in Colorado, the truck broke down, again. He called the owner, but instead of helping, he blasted Craig, saying it was his fault. Craig managed to get the truck repaired, again on his dime. “I was late getting to my delivery destination because of this and the traffic was really bad so I missed the pickup,” Craig explains. “Then things got weird. I got a call from my girlfriend. The boss had called her and said I had stolen the truck. I immediately called 911 and they reassured me that the truck had not been stolen. A few days after he fired me for being late, I got a call from a total stranger, saying he was going to cuff me for stealing the truck.

“I believe my constitutional rights were violated because he bullied and threatened me. Since this incident happened, I have been researching bullying in the workplace. I looked into federal and California labor laws and discovered a bullying advocate movement. I just want to work, I am not looking for money and I don’t want to be on unemployment. But I do want this guy to stop bullying. The workers of America don’t deserve to be treated this way.”

Unfortunately, the State of California has no law in place to prohibit bullying - a form of harassment - in the workplace. It is legal to harass an employee or co-worker until the job becomes unbearable and the worker becomes ill. Bullied workers often wind up with post-traumatic stress disorder and worse; occupational stress can lead to physical illness such as anxiety, high blood pressure and coronary heart disease.

Other states are leading the fight against bullying, so people like Craig are hopeful that California won’t be far behind. For instance, the National Association of Government Employees Local 282 in Massachusetts has been one of the first unions in the country to include an anti-bullying clause in collective bargaining agreements.

Also leading the charge is Gary Namie, a social psychologist who co-founded the Workplace Bullying Institute in 1997. He says the economic downturn has made bullying even worse and argues that passage of the laws would give employers more incentive to crack down on bad behavior in the workplace.

In the meantime, Craig might attend a rally with the California Healthy Workplace Advocates, who say “We are here because Bullying Breaks Hearts.” Their mission is to “Raise Public Awareness and Compel our State to Correct and Prevent Abusive Work Environment Through Legislation.”

Posted by
Craig Olsen
on April 7, 2014 Dear Jane

This is jaw dropping and awesome what you have done and just want to say Thank You. It just shows me that you can be smart , intelligent and a Good Person too such as yourself.. Hope all's we'll and I will stay strong and not be like the Bully

God Bless
Craig Olsen
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Re: Allstate Protects Their Bullies

Unread postby RatPak11 » Sun Apr 13, 2014 10:43 pm ... -bullying/

Help! My Boss Is An Abusive Jerk
AOL reader questions asked and answered about boss problems
By Donna Ballman
March 18, 2014

An AOL Jobs reader asks:

What action would you suggest staff take when the Executive Director of an organization is abusive to staff? Staff does not have access to HR. They report to the ED who reports to the board. Some incidents have been "investigated" by one or two board members and the HR of the employer of a board member. Nothing has improved. Incidents have been the ED slapping the hand, kicking, and yelling at an employee to "go do your f****** job," commenting on how an employee is dressed, yelling at staff, ED "forgetting" they did or said something, not following policies and procedures consistently, speaking harshly as to show their superiority. We are at a loss as to what to do. We are not permitted to speak to any member of the board without the ED's consent. We are a small staff of six employees. Suggestions would be most welcome.

Another reader asks:

My daughter has been working at a small firm for approx. 5 yrs. About a year ago her supervisor who she has always had a good relationship with began telling her that nobody likes her and she should start looking for another job. In addition on pay day she throws her check at her. She was told by the same person she was not to talk to the owners when they were in a particular room. She followed the directions which led to her being told by the supervisor that the owners wanted to know what was wrong with her which of course led to more nasty comments. All of the comments are about her personally and not about her job performance. My daughter has seniority over a number of newer employees but the supervisor appears to go out of her way to give the newer employees the better hours and days off. My daughter spoke with the owners, who did apologize for bringing it up to the supervisor but did not want to get involved. She then had a meeting with owners of the firm who told her that they were pleased with her work and proceeded to call in the supervisor. Once again the supervisor offered no facts on her work ethic but proceeded to state that no one liked her. The owners said that they would understand if she needed to apply for another position. This is a small industry and everyone knows one another. My daughter is now terrified to go on any interviews for fear that all of her hard work is now useless.

My main concern is my daughter's health. She has experienced hair loss, hives and stomach issues. In conclusion the above is only a small example of the hostile work environment the supervisor has created. My daughter thought she found a permanent home in a field that she loves.

These are just two of the many questions I have received about abusive jerks in the workplace. To top it off, for these two readers, the situation is occurring in small workplaces that may have little protection under employment laws.

Although many states have made attempts to pass workplace anti-bullying laws, not a single one has passed. You're left with very few options under state and federal laws.

Here are some possible legal claims to have an employment lawyer in your state discuss with you:

Assault and battery: Assault is where someone makes you afraid you're going to be hit. If your boss is throwing things at you, then it could be assault. Battery is any unwanted touching. The problem, of course, is proving damages. If you weren't hurt, then it may be difficult to sue for money damages.

Stalking: Some states have anti-stalking laws like my home state of Florida's that prohibit "a course of conduct directed at a specific person which causes substantial emotional distress to that person and serves no legitimate purpose." While I haven't seen any successful cases by employees against employers stalking them, I've seen it the other way around.

Intentional or negligent infliction of emotional distress: If the harasser's conduct is extreme or outrageous and it causes you emotional harm, then you may have a claim against them for intentional or negligent infliction of emotional distress. Florida has something called the "impact rule" that requires a physical impact before you can claim infliction of emotional distress, but others have different requirements.

State or local discrimination law: Your state or local government may have laws protecting people who work for smaller employers. While federal discrimination laws only protect employees with 15 or more employees, state or local laws may protect you. However, to be covered you'll have to prove that the harasser is targeting you due to your race, age, sex, religion, national origin or other protected status. This might be easier than you thought since bullies tend to target the weak and the different. See if you can find a pattern in who is being targeted. If only women, only people of one race, or only older people are targeted, your harasser may be breaking the law.

If you're being harassed, you have to decide whether to complain (if there's even someone to complain to) or keep your mouth shut. If you complain, try to find a way to complain that is protected by your state's law against retaliation. You can be fired for most bullying, hostile environment and harassment complaints. You should talk to an employment lawyer in your state about your options and what laws may protect you.

Don't let the harasser drive you out of your job until you're ready. Look for another job and get out of there as soon as you can, on your schedule, not the harasser's. You should also look into options like short term disability, transfer or medical leave to try to preserve your sanity and your health. Some employers have an employee assistance program that provides counseling to employees. While your options may be limited, there are options available to you if you work in a hellish workplace.

If you need legal advice, it's best to talk to an employment lawyer in your state, but if you have general legal issues you want me to discuss publicly here, whether about discrimination, working conditions, employment contracts, medical leave, or other employment law issues, you can ask me at AOL Jobs.
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Re: Allstate Protects Their Bullies

Unread postby RatPak11 » Sun Apr 13, 2014 11:01 pm ... lawmakers/

Workplace Bullying Bill Set To Go To Tennessee Lawmakers
Posted on: 5:55 pm, March 24, 2014,
by April Thompson, updated on: 06:28pm, March 24, 2014

(Memphis) “You can’t just walk on your job because you don’t know how your boss is gonna react to you that day,” Helen Collins said as she described the stress of a job that literally knocked her off her feet.

She suffered a stroke four years ago at the school where she worked as a cafeteria monitor.

She says it was a job that didn’t have to be stressful, but turned out to be that and more.

“At points I felt worthless, felt degraded, that I wasn’t good enough,” said Collins.

“It could be someone that is simply sabotaging your work. It could be someone starts rumors about you, creating lies,” said Tennessee State Representative Antonio Parkinson of Memphis.

Those type of complaints caused him to draft a workplace bullying bill that he started pushing in the Tennessee Legislature this week.

“Our numbers indicate that nearly 33 percent of Tennesseeans have been the victims of work place abuse or will see work place abuse in the work place at some point,” said Parkinson.

He says bullying is happening in the workplace more often.

While his bill can’t force private companies to address the issue, it can encourage them and put in place policies to make sure the often silent issue is given more attention.

He says where lawmakers can mandate even more change is in the government sector.

“That would be your city and county governments to make sure that this act is enacted within these public work places and for public employees,” said Parkinson.

When the bill is introduced to lawmakers, Collins plans to be right there as an example of the toll bullying can take and why it has to end.

“You should be able to go to work and be happy at work,” said Collins.

If passed, the Healthy Work Place Bill will take effect July 1, 2014 and require employers to have written policies in place to report and investigate work place bullying cases.

The bill will also address handling frivolous bullying complaints so employers can be protected.
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Re: Allstate Protects Their Bullies

Unread postby RatPak11 » Sun Apr 13, 2014 11:05 pm ... 02815.html

Mobbing in the Workplace: Even the Good Go Bad
Posted: 11/23/11 09:12 AM ET
Janice Harper

Do only bad people bully? Apparently if good people are encouraged to treat others badly, that's exactly what they will do, and often without remorse. A number of memorable experiments from the sixties and seventies have demonstrated just how easily it is for someone in a position of authority to encourage group aggression; decades later, we still have a lot to learn from them. What might they tell us about aggressive behavior in the workplace and other group settings where people are tormented, shunned, and driven away? For starters, just because people are out to get you, it doesn't mean you're paranoid. And it doesn't necessarily mean you've done anything to deserve it. Here's why.

Following the assassination of Martin Luther King in 1968, third grade teacher Jane Elliott was so disturbed by the ease with which racism persists in our society that she set out to test how "difference" is learned. After dividing her students by eye color, she told them that one eye color was superior to another. Those with brown eyes, she proclaimed, were not as smart and hard-working as those with blue eyes. To be sure eye color was noticeable, she had the children with brown eyes wear brown paper collars around their necks so that their "difference" was unmistakable.

Ms. Elliott watched in horror as her students almost immediately began to act abhorrently toward their collared friends and classmates. Their abuse grew particularly aggressive at recess - when she, the authority figure, was no longer present. In other words, once their teacher suggested one group was inferior, the children viewed them as deserving of abuse and their teacher did not even need to be present for their aggression to escalate. The next day, Ms. Elliott reversed the experiment, telling the students she had been wrong, and that blue eyes were inferior to brown. To her surprise, the students who had been considered "inferior" the previous day and learned how painful it was to be mistreated, were no more compassionate than their classmates had been to them. They became every bit as cruel to the new "inferior" group, until their aggression became so great that Ms. Elliott was forced to terminate the experiment.

A few years later, in 1971, psychologist Philip Zimbardo conducted the infamous "Stanford Prison experiments," where research subjects were assigned roles as prison guards or prisoners, only to discover that the "guards" acted abhorrently to their "prisoners," and that the "prisoners" suffered greatly and retreated into roles of dutiful compliance - going so far as to report, abuse and shun other prisoners who attempted to escape or end the experiment. Like Elliott, Zimbardo also terminated his experiment when he realized the abuse would not stop unless he called a halt to it.

Zimbardo and Elliot's findings were similar to Stanley Milgram's 1963 social psychology experiments on obedience to authority. Milgram had men in white coats tell research subjects to administer a test to "learners" (who were in another room where they could be heard, but not seen). If the learners gave the wrong answer, the teachers were to administer what they (falsely) believed to be electric shocks. The learners were instructed to scream as if in agonizing pain, and if the teacher expressed any hesitation, the men in white coats assured them that they would not be held responsible for any injuries. The teachers continued to inflict what they believed to be excruciatingly painful electric shocks, even when the learners informed the teachers beforehand that they suffered from a heart condition. Sixty-five percent of the teachers escalated the voltage of the "shocks" until they repeatedly administered what they believed to be lethal shocks of 450 volts.

These experiments, which have been replicated in similar and differing forms many times, demonstrate that ordinary kind and humane people can easily become sadistic under certain conditions - conditions routinely found in organizational settings where someone in a position of leadership makes it clear that certain individuals are undesirable, may be mistreated, shunned, and even falsely accused of misconduct and crimes. Importantly, as long as people believe that will not be held accountable for their actions, and the more they see others acting aggressively without sanction, the more likely they will behave aggressively regardless of how empathetic they are as individuals. When applied to the workplace, these findings suggest that the conventional "bully" paradigm, which views interpersonal aggression as the fault of one or two bad apples, falls short. "Mobbing" - collective aggression against an individual - more accurately describes what happens to the workforce when someone in a position of influence or power targets someone for elimination.

Mobbing may commence as interpersonal "bullying" behavior, but through pressure, perks, rumors, and mounting fear, bullying rapidly escalates to collective bloodlust if management wants to eliminate a worker. Regardless of prior positive relationships with the target, the workforce comes to view the target's problems as a threat to their own job security, and often as an opportunity to align with management. Joining the mob may enable workers to secure perks and promotions for cooperating in management's efforts to dispose of a "difficult" employee - the whistleblower, the target of discriminatory or abusive treatment, or anyone who has brought a thorny issue to the attention of management. Mobbing also provides solace that despite evidence to the contrary, the organizational culture is safe. The consensus of the mob assures the workforce that any abuse a worker suffers must be of their own making or it never would have happened.

Mobbing is widely understood in Europe as a form of collective aggression that profoundly impacts a targeted worker's health and productivity, but less known in the U.S. where "bullying" is a more common explanation for interpersonal workplace aggression. Viewing "bullies" as the cause of workplace conflict presumes that the aggression a target endures is due to the psychopathology of a single aggressive individual, while ignoring the devastating impact of collective aggression. Such a view ignores the fact that as bullying turns to mobbing, even good apples go bad, as the experiments of Elliott, Zimbardo and Milgram have demonstrated.

While one or two nasty people may indeed instigate the attacks, once mobbing commences many otherwise decent people can be expected to engage in some of the most damaging acts of aggression. But these aggressors may never be held accountable for their actions and often are rewarded. Like sharpshooters on a firing squad, everybody pulls the trigger, but nobody worries that they have fired the lethal shot once the target has been buried. Given what we know of group behavior and obedience to authority, perhaps it is time to explore the collective nature of aggression in the workplace, rather than the nature of individual bad apples. Doing so might move the dialogue from one of intolerance for individual bullies, toward compassion for the unwitting workers who find themselves up against a mob - and moral accountability, at the very least, for those who participate in mobbing.

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Re: Allstate Protects Their Bullies

Unread postby RatPak11 » Sun Apr 13, 2014 11:29 pm ... 36623.html

Bullying, Mobbing and the Role of Shame
Posted: 09/18/2013 6:22 pm
Janice Harper

Have you ever felt guilty about something you did, even though you were never caught? Have you ever been ashamed of yourself, even though others might not know how you secretly feel? Guilt and shame are human emotions that everyone feels at one time or another. For some, these powerful emotions become so familiar that they become character traits, whether the stereotypical Catholic or Jewish bad boy who feels guilt every time he thinks of nuns or mothers, or the hyper-sexual bad girl who feels shamed for behaving like her brother -- whose own hyper-sexuality is a marker of his virility.

Although we often use the terms shame and guilt interchangeably, those who study these emotions are careful to distinguish them. Guilt is an emotion we feel about a specific behavior, while shame is an emotion we feel about who we are. Shame is a corrosive, destructive emotion that leads us onto the path of self-loathing where, in defense of ourselves and in a desperate struggle to break free of our painful feelings about our self worth, we justify our actions--and our identities--as caused by something or someone else. According to psychologist June Tangney, the more shamed we are, the greater our anger and the less we are able to feel empathy -- because we so want to stop the painful feelings of shame that we realign our perceptions of the world so that we are not ashamed. It's not our fault. We aren't bad people. Everyone does it. We had no choice. Others made us do it. The process is called cognitive dissonance -- our ability to distance ourselves from our pain by altering the way we perceive the people and events surrounding it.

In contrast, guilt is an emotion that is more closely correlated with empathy. When we feel guilty about something, we do feel bad, but we feel bad about a specific event in which we behaved in a way we know is contrary to our values. We are more likely to understand how others perceive our actions, and we are more willing to cooperate with others, become self-reflexive, and take corrective action to alter the behavior.

Understanding the distinctions between these two emotions can go far in helping us understand and cope with workplace bullying and mobbing. To do so, consider the three distinct roles that shame plays in bullying and mobbing. Shaming plays a critical role in controlling the behavior of everyone involved.

For the target, being shamed is a humiliating experience as they are systematically told and reminded that their worth as a human is not valued. As the target is shamed, they withdraw into themselves, begin to feel inherently flawed and worthless, and in an ironic twist of the knife, metaphorically join the aggressors through self-loathing. Just as the aggressors make it clear they are unwanted and not valued, the target of bullying or mobbing feels, on some level, that they must be what they are viewed as. As the bullying behavior turns to mobbing, more and more people join in the shaming, and the sheer number of people who turn against them reinforces the sense that if "everyone" feels that way, then there must be something to it.

And that feeling just infuriates the target who has been shamed. They may internalize the shame and self-loathing, but on a conscious level, they know it is wrong, that it is undeserved, and that it is causing them excruciating pain -- and threatening their livelihood. Yet the very reason they are shamed -- to make them feel bad about themselves, to drive them away, to push them to the edge and make them snap -- thus proving how deserving they are of the abuse -- is exactly what feeds the anger. The target who has been shamed will feel escalating anger that may well reinforce the aggressors' perceptions that they're crazy, if not threatening and dangerous, but will actually make them somewhat crazy, threatening and dangerous -- which is hardly adaptive behavior for those who want to live and work safely and sanely. In other words, the target who is shamed is unlikely to empathize with their aggressors, is more likely to become emotionally unstable and increasingly angry, and is more likely to internalize the sense of self-worth to such an extent they may become self destructive -- through bad decision-making, increased use of drugs and alcohol, and in prolonged cases, sometimes driven to suicide -- if not homicide. Shaming targets is a no-win situation for anyone who seeks healthy relationships and humane behavior.

A second way in which shaming operates is in the manner in which it escalates bullying into mobbing. In my new e-book, Mobbed! A Survival Guide to Adult Bullying and Mobbing (available on Amazon), I discuss how collective bullying, also known as mobbing, is triggered and enflamed. One of the key ways in which an abusive manager can persuade otherwise kind and decent people to help eliminate a worker, is by encouraging the "small betrayal." A small betrayal is easy to provoke; all a manager needs to do is tell a target's coworker that they understand how stressful the target's problems have been; how they do not have to worry about anything happening to them, they'll be fine, but the target has never been happy and it's in their best interest to leave. That's about all they need to say.

The coworker will likely agree -- yes, it is a pain to listen to their coworker complain about how they're being treated. They do sometimes wish they would just leave and find another job. And once they openly agree with the manager who is abusing their fellow coworker--generally followed by some perk or promise from the manager that has them leaving the office happy (while their coworker is miserable, yet again . . .) -- the closer they are to the targeted worker, the more they'll feel the pangs of shame.

And feeling those pangs, they will walk down the hall and back to their own office thinking about how nice the manager was to them to give them that perk, that promise, or that reassurance they'd be safe and no one will bully them. And the more they think about how nice things are going for themselves, the faster cognitive dissonance will kick in -- they'll start seeing their friend and coworker as bringing the problem on themselves, "always" being miserable, "never" happy, and on and on -- until by the end of the day, they will feel no shame at all for their small betrayal. At that point, they will be primed for the bigger betrayals that are sure to come. Shaming works to turn bystanders into perpetrators by encouraging small betrayals, thus conditioning them for larger ones as they transform their own shame into the conviction that it's not their fault -- the targeted worker deserves their abusive treatment. The more we are convinced that our aggression is deserved, the less we will restrain it, and the more we will persuade ourselves that it isn't shameful, it's the opposite. It's moral.

Finally, a third way in which shaming works to intensify workplace aggression and undermine any potential for empathy and cooperation, is through the increasingly popular tactic of bully shaming. Bully shaming is the public ridicule of a worker as a "bully," encouraging them to not only get fired, but to be driven from their careers if not any opportunity for employment. Facebook pages devoted to bully shaming print names and photos of the people they accuse of bullying behaviors, focusing on individuals over group aggression, and delighting in the demonizing of people who for most commenters, are complete strangers. To be accused of bullying in this day and age is to be found guilty -- and worthy of public ridicule, banishment from employment, and humane treatment.

What's wrong with this picture? What's wrong is this -- first, public accusation in the internet age can destroy anyone's reputation and career without the opportunity for fairness, reason, or objective investigation. Second, even if the person so accused has acted badly, if not abhorrently, by publicly shaming them, they are likely to become more defensive of their behaviors, less empathetic of the concerns of others who accuse them, less willing to cooperate and change their behaviors, and far more angry -- and potentially aggressive -- the more they are shamed. In other words, if the person is unfairly accused of bullying behaviors, they are given no opportunity to defend themselves, while if they have acted badly, chances are shaming will lead them to act even more badly.

If the goal of opposing workplace bullying is indeed to promote more humane workplace environments, decrease workplace aggression, and reduce the potential for workplace violence, shaming targets or shaming bullies is counterproductive. It may be tempting to shame someone who has hurt or disturbed us, it may even bring perverse delight in watching their public downfall. But peace-building in the workplace requires each of us to develop empathy for others. Shaming our coworkers, no matter how badly they've behaved or what mistakes they've made, by pointing fingers and telling the whole world that they are bad people and deserving of bad treatment, is no way to build healthy workplaces or communities. By focusing on the bad behavior, rather than the bad person, we are far more likely to motivate our coworkers to change their behaviors, become cooperative, and empathize with our own concerns. The secret to the shame game is that no matter how it's played, it can't be won, except by those who choose not to play it.

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Thank you Ms. Harper for the powerful article.

The shame that goes along with being a target is devastating and stuck with me. I always have to remind myself that the negative reviews, humiliation and screaming tirades were not based on a real evaluation of my behaviors, especially at the start.

I agree with what you say about the importance of "focusing on the bad behavior, rather than the bad person" to really make a difference.

However, how do we stop bullying if bullying behaviors cannot be called out?

"In other words, if the person is unfairly accused of bullying behaviors, they are given no opportunity to defend themselves, while if they have acted badly, chances are shaming will lead them to act even more badly."

I don't want to label my aggressor a bully, but shouldn't I be able to call out their behavior. If their personal shame results from a truthful account of their behavior, how can we avoid it without lying?

This is hard for me to understand.
19 SEP 2013 11:06 AM

IN REPLY TO bully_buster
Janice Harper
You ask a very good question and I agree with Beverly Peterson's answer. I would also add that you should consider the stage at which you are being mistreated. If it remains an interpersonal issue with only one person acting badly, tell them clearly, confidently, but in a non-threatening manner (using humor effectively often works), that you do not like the behavior. Give them another warning, if you must. Try to avoid filing a formal report if you can, because it could backfire and ignite a mobbing, as unfair as that is. If a mobbing has commenced, however, and several people are acting aggressively, as much as you should have every right to seek help and make it stop, it will likely worsen. If that is the case, you may well have to plan an exit strategy. In my book I have a chapter entitled "Protect Yourself Professionally," which I recommend. The bottom line is, when it comes to workplace abuse, often what is fair, and what is effective and possible, are mutually exclusive. Always focus on protecting yourself, before seeking justice, because the latter is often elusive in an abusive workplace environment, and the former always necessary to your emotional and professional survival.
20 SEP 2013 7:03 AM

I don't know what Dr. Harper will say but asking someone to stop abrasive behavior does not require labeling the person a bully. Generally they are given time to understand the impact of their behavior and a chance to correct it. If they can't, then they are asked to leave. This is similar to how sexual harassment was addressed.
19 SEP 2013 3:59 PM

I'm so glad the Huffington Post published your thoughtful article. It's sad that, despite several years of scientific research that supports the arguments you make, the media continues to feed on and fuel the anger of targets of abuse. Hopefully your book will help move the national dialog forward beyond finger pointing and witch hunts toward real solutions and healing. It's long overdue.
19 SEP 2013 2:46 AM

Also,I think if one has a high level of self-awareness...they will not make excuses to justify their behavior. That's how I was raised...I have had my MD'S tell me they love me because I am so honest about who I am,why I feel the way I feel,and that I bring out the best in THEM d/t my ability to admit fault,shame and guilt. I am so confused by this article and how it is so intertwined in a topic that I feel,the victim of mobbing,shouldnt feel. Nor,should it be even considered one should feel shame and guilt. I don't know bout you guys,but when I suffered mobbing...I felt mortified,sad for the human race,perplexed that someone could be so mean. I never felt guilt or shame? Am I missing something...feel free, let me know,cuz Im so confused
21 SEP 2013 4:21 PM

You are functioning at tip top capacity!

I too saw the article and said ...... huh?

Who gives a bleep about how the perp of bullying/mobbing feels. And those bystanders are no better. It is like What would you do with John Quinones, being mugged on the sidewalk in broad daylight with bystanders watching.... I am always baffled at those who will run away or do nothing at all, cowering or continuing on to walk faster not even getting help. This is exactly what happens in workplace bullying, mobbing harassment. Much of it can feel like rape if enough of it is sadistic or indecent or humiliating or degrading and persistently so. It will in fact give you PTSD and a new lens through which to see the world you once loved.

FAR TOO many bully/mobb apologists. Could it be that those who try and apologize or condone have too a seedy past or inclination for deviance thus feel self guilt that allows them to make excuse?

When we say NO, not just maybe or ok, just a little or sometimes....but just NO FREAKIN WAY...LIFE IS TOO SHORT TO ALLOW OTHERS TO IMPEDE THE EXPERIENCE OF OTHERS ON PURPOSE AND IN TARGET PRACTICE. There should be laws for swift accountability just the same as for rape, mugging and more. Get the hell away from and out of my life with your intent to poison is what the laws should SAY.
26 SEP 2013 10:13 AM

I am sorry,but if a person is of good moral character,I do not believe they can be so moronic,as to join in with the bullying...especially as adults. The kind of behavior that is spoken of in this article,reminds me of playground bullying,not adult workplace bullying. I have suffered workplace bullying/mobbing....and before I have even suffered workplace mobbing...I did not drink the koolaid and follow along with the masses....So,I am highly confused by this article.
21 SEP 2013 4:13 PM

Thank you for writing about this important issue. I have been subjected to workplace mobbing in 2010. Everyone at the work place was not bad. It was a certain group who wanted to ruin my professional career and personal life. Since then It was extremely difficult for me to find a job. Today I lost all my support system and I can no longer find a job in my field. This is my story.
27 SEP 2013 1:29 AM

IN REPLY TO hp_blogger_Janice Harper
Dr. Harper,
But if we "throw in the towel" and have an "exit strategy" How will anything ever change this mobbing sickness? Shouldn't we try to fight for what is wrong,try to make a change,even if it is for 1 person? If everyone,were to have an exit strategy,everytime they are bullied or mobbed,most employers,would probably lose half their employers?!?! especially in this day and age. So,you are actually saying...leave your job? What if you cant? what if you live paycheck to paycheck? I am sorry Dr. Harper,but in my world,that was not option...I would have been homeless....."exit strategy's" are much easier said,than done/available.
21 SEP 2013 4:34 PM

Janice Harper
I very much understand how difficult leaving a job is, having been there myself, and I encourage you to read my book to have a better understanding of when and why to leave. If the aggression escalates beyond the point where it can be resolved, the longer you stay the more cruel and deadly the aggression will become. I have never spoken to a whistleblower or target of mobbing who said that the fight was worth it, or that they should have stayed longer. Human aggression knows no limits once permission to attack has been granted and the target who stays learns at their own defeat just how unrelenting it will become. If you can stop it early, that's the best outcome, but if you can't, staying might cost you far more than a paycheck.
21 SEP 2013 5:22 PM
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Re: Allstate Protects Their Bullies

Unread postby RatPak11 » Mon Apr 14, 2014 12:21 am ... d-boss.htm

What Makes a Manager a Bad Boss?
By Susan M. Heathfield
April 1, 2014

Bad bosses are a perennially popular topic on this site. I think that the topic of a bad boss resonates with everyone because we've all had one at one time or another during our working lives.

I ran a poll in the past that asked what you would do if you had a bad boss. The majority of readers said they would talk with their boss. I lauded everyone's courage, but your responses also made me think. Here are my thoughts about how to deal with a bad boss.

You're weary. You're frustrated. You're unhappy. You're demotivated. Your interaction with your boss leaves you cold. He's a bully, intrusive, controlling, picky or petty. He takes credit for your work, never provides positive feedback and misses each meeting he schedules with you. Or he caves immediately under pressure and fails to support you in accomplishing your job.

He's a bad boss, bad to the bone. Dealing with a less than effective manager, or just plain bad managers and bad bosses, is a challenge too many employees face. No matter the character of your bad boss, these ideas will help you deal with your bad boss.

Does the Bad Boss Know?

Start your campaign by understanding that your boss may not know he is bad. Just as in situational leadership, the definition of bad depends on the employee's needs, the manager's skills and the circumstances.

A hands-off manager may not realize that his failure to provide any direction or feedback makes him a bad boss. He may think he’s empowering his staff. A manager who provides too much direction and micromanages may feel insecure and uncertain about his own job. He may not realize his direction is insulting to a competent, secure, self-directed staff member.

Or, maybe the boss lacks training and is so overwhelmed with his job requirements that he can’t provide support for you. Perhaps he has been promoted too quickly or his reporting responsibilities have expanded beyond his reach. In these days of downsizing, responsibilities are often shared by fewer staff members than ever before.

This bad boss may not share your values. The newer generation of workers expect that they can use their vacation time and take action to make work-life balance a priority. Not all bosses share these views. If your values are out of sync with those of your boss, you do have a problem.

Recommended Approach to the Unwitting Bad Boss

Talk to this boss. Tell him what you need from him in term of direction, feedback and support. Be polite and focus on your needs. Telling the boss he’s a bad boss is counterproductive and won’t help you meet your goals.

Ask the manager how you can help him reach his goals. Make sure you listen well and provide the needed assistance.

Seek a mentor from among other managers or more skilled peers, with the full knowledge of your current manager, to enlarge your opportunity for experience.

If you’ve taken these actions, and they haven’t worked, go to your boss’s manager and ask for assistance. Or, you can go to your Human Resources staff first, to rehearse and gain advice. Understand that your current boss may never forgive you, so ensure you have done what you can do with him, before taking your issues up the line.

You may never hear what the boss’s boss or the HR staff did to help solve your bad manager’s behavior. It’s confidential. But, do allow some time to pass for the actions to have their desired impact.

If nothing changes, despite your best efforts, and you think the problem is that they don’t believe you, draw together coworkers who also experience the behavior. Visit the boss’s manager to help him see the size and impact of the behavior.

If you think the problem is that your boss can’t – or won’t – change, ask for a transfer to another department. This recommendation presumes you like your employer and your work.

If a transfer or promotion is unavailable, begin your search for a new job. Fleeing is always an option. You may want to conduct your job search secretly, but under the circumstances, it may be time for you to go.

When the Bad Boss Knows

Working with a manager at a client company, we discussed his approach to employees. He looked down his nose at them. He criticized and screamed at employees. He publicly humiliated any employee who made a mistake.

One day he called me to ask a question. I thought, “Great. Break through.” I was doomed to disappointment when he said, “I know that you don’t approve of me screaming at staff as a regular thing.” I agreed. “So, can you tell me, please, what are the circumstances under which it is okay to scream at them?”

This manager thought his behavior was perfectly acceptable. (The end of the story? He never did change and was eventually removed as manager.) Most managers that bully, intimidate, cruelly criticize, name call and treat you as if you are stupid likely know what they are doing. They may know they’re bad and even revel in their badness.

They may feel their behavior has been condoned - and even encouraged - within your organization. They may have learned the behaviors from their former supervisor who was viewed as successful.

You don’t have to put up with demeaning behavior. You deserve a good boss who helps your self-confidence and self-esteem grow. You deserve a good boss who helps you advance your career. You deserve civil, professional treatment at work.

Recommended Approach to the Bad Boss Who Knows

Start by recognizing that you have the right to a professional environment in your workplace. You are not the problem. You have a bad boss. He is the problem.

You can try talking with the bad boss to tell him the impact that his actions or words are having on you or your performance. In a rare blue moon, the bad boss might care enough to work to modify his behavior. If he does decide to work on his behavior, hold him to his commitments. If you allow him to yell at you, even just a little bit, you are training him that he can get away with his former behavior. Don’t go to war publicly, but draw his behavior to his attention as soon as you have the opportunity, privately.

If the behavior does not change, appeal to his supervisor and to Human Resources staff. Describe exactly what he does and the impact the behavior is having on you and your job performance. You may never hear what the boss’s boss or the HR staff did to help solve your bad manager’s behavior. It’s confidential. But, do allow some time to pass for the actions to have their desired impact.

If nothing changes, despite your best efforts, and you think the problem is that they don’t believe you, draw together coworkers who also experience the behavior. Visit the boss’s manager to help him see the size and impact of the behavior.

If you think the problem is that your boss can’t – or won’t – change, ask for a transfer to another department. This recommendation presumes you like your employer and your work.

If a transfer or promotion is unavailable, begin your search for a new job. Fleeing is always an option. You may want to conduct your job search secretly, but under the circumstances, it may be time for you to go.


(1) GG says:
The manager is not qualified for the position, and has less experience than some (all) of his direct reports.

April 24, 2006 at 5:07 pm(2) rachel says:
Let me add from my own experience:
Brings up past transgressions months later.
Does not have a clue as to the definition of performance versus behavior.
Can’t deal with intelligent employees who disagree or have their own thoughts/opinions.
Is dishonest.
Overbearing in expectations
Does not communicate expectations or goals.
Ignores people and/or plays favorites with staff – superstar today, black hole the next.
Loves brownnosers and tattletales
Lack of integrity, breaks promises
Complains and does not solve problems
Can’t handle the truth or perceptions about the organization
Uses people without reward or recognition

September 23, 2011 at 1:42 pm(3) mary says:
I work for a big company and i have a real drama supervisor her employers dont mean squt i am a lead went to complain about how she yells at me in front of employeses. The manager told me i was a nobody and that my job was just to order material. My supervisior complains to me about what i am doing wrong she has her favorites and people are tiered, I wanted to quit my job, But i am a dam good lead i take care of the people,.Should i go to hr and asked to be moved. I am bilingual and most of the employees are spanish. I always tell them to go to her and they said she doesnt care.She never include me in anything she goes to another supervisor and they talke always with the f work.

October 16, 2011 at 8:55 am(4) natalie says:
i have a boss just like this…and when ppl resign even with proper notice they do not get their last paycheck…..i wanna go how should i do it

(5) kollette says:
A bad boss is one who feels he can wait to the last minute to present you with projects and assignments because you always get it done.

April 27, 2006 at 8:15 am(6) Miu says:
A bad boss is one who does not have the courage to deal with a difficult situation despite knowing that it is the right thing to do.

April 27, 2006 at 12:23 pm(7) Tasha says:
A bad boss is someone (or an organization) who does not know that his staff is his greatest asset. Happy staff = happy customers.

April 29, 2006 at 6:17 pm(8) Haneefah says:
1) Does not know her job description; Not qualified for the position at ALL, and will take the credit although they do nothing but create chaos.

2) Can’t deal with intelligent employees who disagree or have their own thoughts/opinions.

3) Is dishonest/lies.

3) Does not communicate expectations or goals. Generally communicates through others during interviews(with the interviewee present)or in front of other staff members.

5) Lack of integrity, breaks promises

5) Constantly Complains and does not solve problems. Actually CREATES the problems

5) Makes negative comments about the agency/organization

6) Uses people without reward or recognition, but again will take the credit for work done

7) Makes racial comments about staff or interviewees

May 8, 2006 at 9:55 am(9) Joel says:
I can relate this to my present “boss”. She possesses all of these negative traits.
1. Takes credit for good things employees do, but redirects blame when something goes wrong.
2. When something goes wrong, blames people and makes them look bad when they should step back and look at the process to see where it failed.
3. Does not communicate goals, timelines or expectations. Expects employees to read their mind.
4. Uses disciplinary procedures too often and alienates employees. Most of the time, simple positive communication will correct the problem.
5. Plays favorites. Certain employees get away with murder, while others get written up for every little infraction.

May 12, 2006 at 4:58 am(10) Marshall W. says:
1. Discrimination and favoritism.

2. Looks at job performance alone.

3. Unapproachable.

4. Indecisive in goal setting.

5. Always searching for faults and never commending a good job done.

May 14, 2006 at 7:23 pm(11) Joel says:
A bad boss is one who when on the phone, makes her statement Loudly, rudely and slams the phone down on you when she is finished without allowing you to explain or defend yourself.

May 14, 2006 at 7:29 pm(12) Cindy says:
A Bad Boss: Someone who creates chaos and animosities weekly among staff, who exhibits extreme lack of self control consistently when angry, who bullies the employees in every way listed in the books, has a new target constantly (whether current employee or ex-employee) and uses defamation of these people constantly, but is allowed to continue with this unprofessionalism and mismanagement – so continues. Actually that makes HER boss the ‘BAD BOSS’….

May 14, 2006 at 7:34 pm(13) Joanne says:
A Bad Boss is one who allows (and thus encourages) Bullying in the Workplace!

May 14, 2006 at 11:52 pm(14) JC says:
A bad boss–someone who cannot manage himself, much less a company. Someone who hands you everyone’s jobs plus his because he needs to take a month and half off to vacation. Of course, you will go on doing everyone’s jobs after he finally shows up again and the company degenerates into sheer idiocy once more.
Someone known to his entire staff as a doper and a drunk. Someone who bills the customers for bogus expenses and never collects so he stiffs the staff on pay. Need I continue?

May 17, 2006 at 7:21 am(15) Anna says:
thank god I’m not alone! Introducing my male boss:
“Women are the only mammal that bleeds once a month and survives”
Only wants to hire women if “they are past child-bearing age”
“I want full control of this tender”, “drop everything and work on the tender, I must see it 1st before it’s sent out”, “Too busy to look at the tender, just send it how it is. If we don’t get it it’s your fault”.
“I used to be a white van man and now I’ve got an MBA” Have you? why don’t you try to use it?
sexist, neanderthal, emotionally dead, discusses intimate details discussed between him & his wife, insincere, LIES to high heaven, eternally shifts blame, changes track constantly, needs several years intensive therapy. No wonder our staff losses are sky high.

July 28, 2006 at 1:34 pm(16) TERESA says:
A bad boss is one who is moe interested in personal power than in getting the job done well. this person does not have a vison for the company other than personal gain and the projects and their results show this attitude. a very successful corp has leadership that is smat and wise and with integrity.

August 17, 2006 at 3:18 pm(17) Steven says:
At my previous job, I had a lot of what you’ve already mentioned, plus some others.
1. Bring disciplinary action for things that happened months ago (so you can’t remember the details of the incident, if there even was one.)
2. Be as vauge as possible, so when employees ask about advancement and promotion they can be denied based on their failure to complete an uncommunicated objective.
3. Loves the brownnosers, especially other managers who work just like her: slowly and inneffectively.
4. Ignores employees until they make a mistake, then they pounce.
5. Procrastinates, is generally unreliable (employees like to have more than six hours notice concerning next weeks work schedule. We do not prefer the company over our friends and family.)
6. Uses employees as pawns in power struggles with other managers.

August 27, 2006 at 2:36 pm(18) Donald Kluege says:
A bad boss is a person that practices NEPOTISM rather than promoting a person on value added to the organization it is on friendship or being a relative. The boss is usually unqualified. I worked at this company for over 38 years.

August 29, 2006 at 7:09 pm(19) shadow says:
A bad boss/manager:

- takes news that is given to them by a brownnoser, without going back to confirm the truth of the story with the other staff member(s) involved.

- encourages tattletales

- Is fake/dishonest

- speaks down on employees

- Favours some staff over others

- Thinks she is right about everything

- harsh and demeaning tone of voice (no friendliness in the voice whatsoever)


September 4, 2006 at 11:58 pm(20) hd says:
This boss curses every vulgar word from the time he arrives until leaves, intimidates everyone, loves slamming his office door, only because he has removed everyone elses off the hinges…he’s the worst I’ve ever seem.

September 12, 2006 at 9:47 am(21) Pat says:
One that sets an incompetent employee on a pedestal and covers for that employee when his/her work is wrong.

One that takes credit for all the work done, although the subordinates are the ones that actually did the work.

One that has been placed in a supervisory position, yet cannot make a simple decision.

October 24, 2006 at 12:40 pm(22) Waddee says:
Someone who puts on a front, acting like they care about your pay increase and position. In actuality, they want to fire your superior, although his performance is very good, just because he does not like his personality. I said, “Give me a pay increase on my merit alone, not because you expect more from my unrealistic work load as it is.

December 10, 2006 at 5:10 pm(23) Craig says:
There is a good book out on this subject written by Jerome Alexander, “160 Degrees of Deviation: The Case for the Corporate Cynic.” He details several of his own experiences with bad and horrific bosses. More importantly he gives his theories on how the get into positions of power.

December 23, 2006 at 6:26 pm(24) Owen says:
A bad boss is a person who has been given more authority, control, and influence over others than their skills, education, and training would otherwise allow.

A bad boss is absent of the ability to lead by example. He/She cannot or will not accept constructive feedback, ideas, suggestions, recomendations, or solutions other than their own.

November 4, 2011 at 4:05 pm(25) Pat says:
Owen has it all on target. Thanks for the astute comments.

January 7, 2007 at 4:21 am(26) Chris says:
A bad boss:
Does not praise for good work
Is more worried about how the department looks to other departments than how this affects staff
Is unable to understand about emotions and feelings: how the way that they deal with someone affects that person
Plays favourites to the detriment of the department, ruining any teamwork there may have been
Uses discipline and not understanding as the first resort

January 9, 2007 at 10:44 am(27) Mary O'Reilly says:
A bad boss is one who is always trying to please those above him/her at the expense of their own team.
A bad boss is one who does not support his team externally, e.g., someone external to the department points the finger at one of the team and the boss agrees with the complainer!

January 9, 2007 at 8:23 pm(28) Ryan says:
A bad boss shows no passion and provides little to no direction to his employees. It hinders my development and forces me to seek other managers for feedback.

January 18, 2007 at 4:33 am(29) Radhika Batra says:
A Bad boss is one who was always ready to listen the employees advice but when its come to implementation part results are totally different that hasn’t been decided earlier…Here there is a saying listen to all but do what ur mind suggest not keeping other thing into consideration.

February 19, 2007 at 9:03 am(30) Karen Patterson says:
A bad boss is one who gets annoyed when you ask questions and refers you to the company Intranet every time you ask a question. A bad boss is also one who works in a position that is supposed to be highly ethical but always bad-mouths others behind their backs to her staff. A bad boss is also one who insults her staff members (my boss actually told me she could never see me being a mother, and she was not kidding).

February 19, 2007 at 11:49 am(31) Bill says:
A bad boss is one who limits the organization by preventing innovation because of their inability to comprehend the benefits that technology brings to the workplace. Also, if they didn’t think of the innovative way to improve a process, product, or even working condition, it is not worthwhile and what results is a tirade of reasons why this will not work (including reasons that conflict with the reasons why the old technology, process, etc. makes more sense).
A bad boss cares less about improving an employees performance through training if they happen to need but do not obtain that training themselves.
I have had many superb managers but only a few that I would consider bad. Morale suffers from the effect of a bad boss while it thrives under a great or even a good boss. Understanding that the people under you depend on you for guidance, advice, and direction does not mean you must be a dictator!
I have always worked to improve the understanding of those around me and by helping my peers I help myself.

March 9, 2007 at 4:55 pm(32) D says:
#10(Cindy)-Do we work for the same company? Ha!

A “bad boss” is one who constantly tries to be your best friend and gets mad when you don’t reciprocate. I will be friendly, professional, and do the girl chatting on occasion but knowing about torrid, adulterous affairs is not my cup of tea! Word of advice: Don’t ever tell your boss you feel uncomfortable knowing so much. I learned the hard way. Now my work is scrutinized on an hourly basis and I’m constantly being reprimanded for things that make no sense even though I’ve been told on numerous occasions by my “bad boss” that she’s not a micro-manager. Give me a break!

March 23, 2007 at 1:00 pm(33) Tonja says:
What can I say. The above comments pretty much sum up my work place. supervisor: favorites who report on what is said on breaks,put downs,PMD used for retalations,and more.Management said they back their leaders not matter what. Very high turnover of employees. coporate Hr been contacted numerous times by exit interviews,(these were stopped—mmm too many bad interview for the plant?) emloyees called HR, spouses calls, and yet no questions or interviews. Ask questions and you are written up. Well at least the ones who are not on the “Special List.” Group trying to info. together to do something, but we sure are afraid of losing our jobs. Pray for us.They get wind and since we are a state of employment at will, we can be fired with no explanation. We are on a “list” who are watched for everything we do. We just want to do our job, do it well, and enjoy coming to work. Any advice is appreciated.
Thanks Tonja

June 23, 2007 at 11:30 pm(34) C says:
My boss hates all young women and the men who talk to the young women. She will also do anything she can to prove you wrong and when you find she is incorrect she says she was just joking. Acts very pleasantly around her bosses but when she is alone with you she has the nerve to call the thinnest girl at work fat.

July 2, 2007 at 10:34 pm(35) Willie says:
I have been in the work force, for over 30 years, and I can validate every statement referring to bad managers.
Hence, also,stated, by the majority of the company employees observations.
To eliminate, the bad management, it has to come from the higher management direction. If, the problems are ignored and never addressed, by the upper management. The whole concept is moot!!!

July 31, 2007 at 12:41 pm(36) Sherleen says:
All of what has been said, but the bad boss basically has little or integrity, spine, respectability and will marginalize staff (especially when the person[s] show potential to outgrow him/her. The bad boss will go as far as creating situations and blaming staff in that person’s absence to put him/herself in favor with everyone else. The bad boss is desperate and miserable.

July 31, 2007 at 10:37 pm(37) Carole says:
A bad boss is everything so far that had been said. My boss told me that I should use products on my face in order to look more polished. She belittles others in order to make herself look good and when she does not meet her goals and gets called on it she places the blame on her staff then makes us go out and do the work needed to try to reach her goals. She is rarley in the office and then says she observes how little you do and cuts your hours. I have only had one other bad boss before and I would take that boss over this one any day. My current boss is in way over her head as a manager but is a suck-up and a brown-noser to her boss. She plays favorites with some staff for a while then turns around and treats them like dirt and other staff members are her pets. One never knows what will set her off next, be it a heater, a pen holder, health problems, etc. Because of the way she deals with things I have no respect for her at all and neither do any of the other staff members.
A bad boss has many traits and I think we have seen them all in these postings.

August 6, 2007 at 3:40 pm(38) Brenda says:
Bad Managers who decide the success and duration of your employment based on how much of your personal life “the more drama the better” you are willing to share so that she can go and gossip about it to everyone else.
And if you don’t, you will be her worst enemy, and then wait until she is alone in the office, and sabbotage your work and blame it on you.

August 26, 2007 at 2:04 pm(39) Brenda says:
A bad boss is one that turns the table on you when you disagree or have a solution they did not come up with. Later, they use your solution and make it theirs. They tend to keep employees and managers under them that cannot do the job just because they use them as the office snitch. They give other more qualified employees or managers extra duties because they can do the work and the department seems to be running smoothly so the upper manager still looks good while others are being used. This on-going continued behavior causes animosity and deception and eventully will turn on the upper manager. It’s unfortunate that it takes so long and so many good people leave first.

October 11, 2007 at 9:04 pm(40) Anon says:
A bad boss is someone who manipulates every conversation to fit his perception of events or to cover his mistakes. When called on his distorted perception of reality he threatens his employees with their jobs or accuses them of being insubordinate/argumentative.

Changes his employees work performance standards on a day to day basis, as to never allow them to know whether or not work will be considered acceptable. Loyalty, personal behavior, and competence challenged in front of subordinates when work not considered acceptable.

So much more besides what’s listed above…too bad because the job would be enjoyable if it wasn’t for this horrid person.

October 15, 2007 at 5:22 pm(41) Celia says:
A bad boss is someone who puts you down at any opportunity and who nit piks.

There is no praise or support for long hours and effort that you put in.
The praise is only given in front of his own boss or a peer so that he looks good. Everything he does is so that he looks good.

He is unclear on his instructions and changes his mind at the last minute making your ideas into his own to present to his own boss.

You ask a question about your work to clarify what is involved but he takes over and even takes the work off you completely to make himself look good.

Even temps comment to you on how they could n’t put up with his style of management.

Surely that is a bad boss?

October 18, 2007 at 12:24 pm(42) Rose says:
A bad management is who believes the first story they hear and never investigates to get the full picture or ask the person who is being discredited. Only believes that shining star employee that no one likes or trust.

November 13, 2007 at 8:57 pm(43) John says:
WOW… sounds like everyone here works for the same person I do.

November 16, 2007 at 8:26 am(44) Paul says:
A bad boss has high turn over, and breaks his promises. Or keeps ‘forgetting’ promises made – as he say.

December 7, 2007 at 2:01 pm(45) John says:
It’s not just the bad boss. Employees more often than not have bad attitudes that have nothing to do with their boss.

They don’t make themselves indispensable to their employer. They whine, they complain, they wonder why they got canned. They think the company is lucky to have them.

December 21, 2007 at 11:36 am(46) Patty says:
1. Gives no direction or job expectations and then gives a bad review.
2. Sends an employee for classes, puts a title on the employee’s business card,allows the employee to perform in a capacity for over a year and then says during the review “that’s not your job!” and gives more of a bad review.
4. Hires under the pretense of being an assistant to the company, but in reality is a personal assistant to the boss and family!
5. Who uses staff for personal tasks, ie, bill paying, home and auto repairs, returning items to stores WITHOUT a receipt and expects a full refund; then tells the employee they are doing a poor job.
6. Acts like a spoiled child.

January 3, 2008 at 4:40 pm(47) Kevin says:
Screaming at employees, in front of other employees!!

Lacking the ability to do the job they are asking you to do, then telling you you are not doing it right.

January 29, 2008 at 9:40 am(48) ShareMyStaff says:
Working for bad bosses causes their high performing and highly intelligent employees to ultimately seek other places of employment.

What happens is the insecure, fearful, and possibly incompetent “bad boss” actually becomes intimidated by any subordinate who sees straight through their “I know what I’m doing” facade. Once this type of boss recognizes how talented, innovative, creative, and proficient the employee is, they go into attack mode, abusing their authority in order to “keep subordinates in their place.” This is their attempt to lower the confidence of the employee and find minute flaws in that person as their sick effort to even convince themselves that they are smarter than their subordinate.

Since this subordinate is a potential threat and most certainly could do the boss’ job with ease and much better, they are put under a microscope, given negative evaluations, and eventually forced to leave the organization because typically the boss’ boss allows it and that’s the unfortunate, sad part about the whole ordeal. Good people cannot work under those kinds of conditions.

Micromanagers and controlling, power abusers should be made to take responsibility for their lack luster management style and either receive proper training on how to be an effective leader or not be allowed to lead.

June 6, 2011 at 3:14 pm(49) ian says:
I had that experience every year. Especially mid year its salary increase. I always work hard but i always get bad reviews. Are they trying to demoralize me. How did you deal with it.. This boss has break my spirit. I feel like not working today.and i dont. Want to work overtime anymore. Its utseless.

January 29, 2008 at 7:22 pm(50) Confidental says:
A bad boss is one that gathers the group that you supervise and talks about you behind your back to those individuals. After the conversation relays informatin to you that u later find out was not exactly what was said. then writes you up and tells you they will be monitoring your supervisor skills, requests that you make suggestins to help yourself then refuses to allow you to follow through on the things that you are requesting. Ignores you when you report that subordinates are insubordinate and refuse to do what they are asked and will not help address the situation after you have repeatley tried and have been unsucessful. After you make a decision if the individual that you supervise doesn’t like your answer they go to the bad boss and they over ride you all the time. Honestly believes that they are not replaceable is never willing to keep up with advances in technology or make changes to provide a better atmosphere for clients or employees. THAT IS A BAD BAD BAD BAD BOSS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

March 20, 2008 at 6:46 am(51) Pam says:
My current experience with my Bad Boss includes all of the characteristics included in these comments as well as her incessant efforts to keep workers at odds with each other. I am wondering could this also be a means of avoiding embezzlement detection?

April 1, 2008 at 1:15 pm(52) Evan says:
A bad boss is one that does not acknowledge nor keep up with their responsibility to continue learning!

April 28, 2008 at 9:59 pm(53) ellymay says:

June 20, 2008 at 8:30 pm(54) idoru says:
1. Resistant to change.
2. Believes his/her position of authority makes him/her the smartest person in the room.
3. Confrontational communication style.
4. Doesn’t know how to capitalize on the skills of his/her staff.
5. Fear of criticism from superiors.
6. Mental health issues
7. Dishonest about her/his agenda.
8. Dislikes her/his employees.

June 22, 2008 at 5:00 pm(55) JustQuitYAY says:
I finally couldn’t stand it anymore and I quit working for this horrible boss. I wasn’t perfect, either, but generally I’ve always been a good employee and I just couldn’t make this whacko happy. Here’s a summary from this experience:

1. Always takes the other person’s side if you have a disagreement with someone, without getting your side first.

2. Punishes you for not doing something you were never told to do in the first place.

3. Humiliates you in meetings in front of your coworkers and degrades you in private meetings.

4. Tells you to do one thing then a minute later tells you to do the opposite, then later criticizes you for making up your own mind.

5. Tells you to go to her when you have a problem but never solves the problem or even returns the phonecall or e-mail.

6. Doesn’t return e-mails or phone calls

7. Won’t give you data to help you in your job, including goals, targets, or monthly accomplishments… then tells you that you suck.

8. If you raise a question in a meeting you get a slap-down even though it’s something that really needed to be asked.

9. She always has to know your schedule but she never tells you hers, or has her assistants publish it… then bitches you out for calling her when she’s swamped with meetings or something.

10. Sweet as pie one minute and a snapping vicious harpie the next, then a minute later sweet as pie again.

June 25, 2008 at 5:10 pm(56) Dawn says:
A Bad Boss is one who expects you to take responsibility for a position but does not give you the authority to do so.

June 30, 2008 at 10:51 am(57) Marie Waller says:
My Boss is a Pastor and it’s all about him, not all about the church. Whatever he can do to make himself look good to the point of trying to out do past pastors by listing his accomplishments for everyone to see.

July 14, 2008 at 8:45 pm(58) MK says:
Rewards bad behavior. Doesn’t reward those that get the job done. Lies and hides thngs from everyone on team.

July 23, 2008 at 4:56 am(59) Marie says:
My personal experience with a bad boss:

1. She never recognizes your contributions to the company when you consistently exceed goals and and expectations.

2. She questions all of your whereabouts in the course of the workday. If you should happen to go to the restroom or get a drink of water, she questions other employees as to where you could possibly be.

3. You’re penalized for clocking in one minute late.

4. She criticizes and complains about your work performance in the presence of other employees.

5. She goes off half-cocked making false accusations about your work performance without looking at the weekly reports that records employee productivity.

6. She uses the staff meetings to promote herself in the presence of her own boss while shifting blame for any mishaps to staff members.

7. In the staff meetings when her boss is not present, she takes the opportunity to going to a hour long tirade where she speaks in a condescending tone to her staff but never fails to mention her everlasting perfection.

8. She plays favorites by promoting employees who suck up and are not the most qualified. She allows allows these same employees to work overtime while others are denied the opportunity to do so.

9. She entertains gossips and hearsay from her henchmen as the gospel truth.

10. She is unable to effectively communicate department tasks and basic job-related skills without the help of her boss or her henchmen.

11. She demands status reports that records our workday down to the minute but doesn’t even bother to read them because it’s more work than she can handle.

12. She invades your space by looking through your desk in your absence. In fact, the only time that she goes into your cubicle is when you’re not around.

13. She’s dishonest.

July 25, 2008 at 4:50 pm(60) Cougar says:
A bad boss who does not train well or share knowledge and then berates you for not having the knowledge.

Another example is one who gives cash awards to employees because they know they need money and they feel sorry for them.

July 25, 2008 at 5:06 pm(61) Hourly Wage Toad says:
A boss that micromanages your every move. I had a boss who actually asked an employee why she had to pee so often (the woman took diurectics) and then went so far as to go into the bathroom and peek under the stall doors to see who was in there. I caught her doing that once.

July 30, 2008 at 10:09 am(62) Scott says:
Incapable of giving praise for some success without immediatly adding how poorly you are doing in another area.

September 17, 2008 at 9:50 am(63) Christie says:
I thought my manager was just lazy but found that he does not have the social skills to be a manager. He is scared of his employees and managers and hides in his office. He does not feel it is his job to tell his employees what to do so they do whatever they want. It is just unbelievable and I am looking for a new job along with several others. He is every lazy persons dream manager.

September 22, 2008 at 6:02 pm(64) Alden says:
Bad Boss:

1. Doesn’t allow employees to access company intranet
2. Forbids employees to contact corporate office
3. Doesn’t believe in teamwork
4. Doesn’t want employees to talk to each other
5. Strips forwarded email of headers and footers so employee can’t respond to originator
6. Changes work priorities often
7. Never finishes project
8. Demands that all work goes through him
9. Doesn’t allow one employee to ask another employee for something work-related that they need
10. Forbids interaction with all other company offices
11. Insists on handing out paychecks/stubs (doesn’t want them sent to employee’s home)
12. Refuses to throw things away
13. Insists on approving all communication to outside entities

And so much more . . .

Man, I work for a psycho!

October 2, 2008 at 10:17 am(65) Adam West says:
I am in the boat of changes things on a whim, nit picky even at concept stages of a project, doesnt recognize hard work, acts like they know what they are talking about when they fail at every basic concept you would learn within the first year of college in the field, yet insist on having things there way because they are always right…

November 11, 2008 at 4:05 pm(66) Skipper says:
I worked for a guy who made all kinds of promises about my potential with the company. Then, there’s no money for new projects and all raises are put off. He is running up his company Amex bill with vacations and food bills. We all joked that he ate the salary increases. The last straw was him calling on the first day my vacation chewing me out for expense over runs (he approved, but forgot) and now could not buy his new Lexus. And the worst part – he was a consultant who rabidly criticized his best client for doing the same thing!

December 12, 2008 at 8:11 am(67) joyce says:
My bad boss is someone who can NEVER be pleased. Cites “issues” and when resolved just looks for more. Micro-managesand harrasses people and when I finally brought this to HR’s attention, I was terminated. My bad boss is truly the BOSS FROM HELL. She is a person who clearly has psychological problems and we all pay the price for it, and me I paid with my job. On the list of signs you have a bad boss, she or the VP of Operations have ALL those signs. I pray for those left behind.

December 20, 2008 at 12:49 am(68) winney the pooh says:
i am a nurse assistant. my manager is a director of nursing, but i can’t think of one good reason to why she chose to be. she has no consideration for the residents, let alone her employees. she believes there is no such thing as teamwork. she has never one day worked as a cna or a nurse. she went straight through school to get her degree as a DON. just the other day, my whole shift was told we are not to be seen walking around and taking care of our patients together. but i thought to myself, “isnt the biggest issue with health care fields teamwork?” she doesnt feel we should be in rooms together taking care of people if they are not more than one assist. but what we have tried to explain to her is, our residents like to see us helping eachother out and getting along. not only that we get the work done in half the time working as a team. i don’t know what the big issue is about because we never do anything wrong and we get our work done. if i was a manager i would be proud to have a shift with such good teamwork. i guess she wants us to feel the same way she feels. she doesnt like her work and she doesnt want anyone else to enjoy their 8 hours!

January 19, 2009 at 4:41 pm(69) Edna says:
My current supervisor is considered a “great manager” by upper manager because she is so well organized and gets things done. But I think she is incompetent in so many ways.

1. She accuses people of making mistakes that they didn’t make. And then when they tell her they didn’t do it, she makes a face and growls.

2. If she tells you something one time, she expects you to remember it. If you need to be shown something again, she says “I already told you how to do it!”

3. She gets almost all of the credit for the department being run so well, but I think much of that is due to a very talented worker in the department. I think he might do more work than she does and he’s been there longer.

4. She brings up mistakes that people made days, weeks and even months ago.

5. She has no patience.

6. She encourages tattletales and plays favorites.

7. She takes personal phone calls all the time.

8. She has very poor customer service skills, even though we work in customer service.

9. She often exaggerates things.

February 5, 2009 at 11:18 pm(70) Dannie says:
I have seen some of the same unlikable qualities in a boss that all of the fellow contributors have described, but I have a couple new complaints to share.
My boss was exremely thrifty. All his meals were paid for by drug reps. He never paid for a meal. Even the company Christmas parties were paid for by drug companies. Oh,yes did I mention that we even have to rewash plastic disposable cups? When drug companies announced that they would not be giving out free pens and paper, he made the office staff horde as many of each item that each drug rep would give to us. Each staff member was personaly told not to share any of these items with any patient that asked for a pen or tablet.
The worst insult to an employee is sexual advances. I guess by now that you may have figured out that the boss was a physician. He kissed me while he was treating me as a patient. He is no longer my employeer or my family physician. Sexual advances are absolutely uncalled for.

March 16, 2009 at 3:18 pm(71) Steve Smith says:
I have had my selection of both good and bad direct report bosses. the number one bad boss characteristic has to be micromanagement.

Micromanagement says to an employee I don’t trust that you are doing a good job, you will never do a good job and only I know what needs to be done.

In reality,
1. Micromanagers rarely know what the requirements are
2. Do not accept solutions from others
3. Refuse to consider their direct reports as anything other than inferior
4. Change their behavior

because micromanagers trust no one but themselves, they only trust those who “ape” their solutions back to them. Micromanagers need political allies because somewhere buried deep in their subconscious, their inferiority complex lurks.
Micromanagers love and support suck-ups because suck-ups appear to be “supportive” to micromanagers because they are simply agreeing with everything a micromanager says.
Micromanagers thrive in organizations which self-perpetuate and support such conduct. Micromanagers are rarely alone, their bosses undoubtably praise their “attention to detail.”
Micromanagers love the sound of their own voice and love to potificate upon every little detail no matter how minute. Sing their praises and they will sing yours.

If you try to innovate, suggest, resist or “challenge” any of the direction they provide to you, micromanagers will do everything they can to oppress your conduct, pull you down and keep you in your place. Micromanagers know you are under them and there is nothing they like to do more then remind you of how inadequate you are.

March 21, 2009 at 4:13 pm(72) BOKO D. MAJINGE... (UDSM) says:
A bad boss has no sory!!
…He regards employees as expenses.
…He is too rational than normal(being a slave of his pfofessional principles or code of ethics).
…He expect no mistakes.

March 25, 2009 at 8:45 pm(73) barney says:
nightmares,anger,feeling low,lacking direction everything that a boss brings to the table and more,if being a boss is all these things then the failure at times is ours.we go to work too earn the dollars not to make friends with people who suck up,snitch,and smile in your face but they are the puppet of the puppet a lot to enjoy your day but say little to let anyone into your circle of true friends if it becomes difficult keep smiling pretend all is ok and leave it’s not a cowards way out it’s keeping your sanity in check

March 29, 2009 at 8:48 pm(74) Trapped and depressed says:
I’ve read some of the comments people left and even though I know I’m not alone in this I’m still really depressed about my situation at work.
We’ve had a problem with employee’s calling in sick too often. It finally came to a point when one day everyone called in sick. I was the only person who showed up for work. The next day the manager called everyone in her office and yelled at all of us. She yelled that our jobs are not secure and if we didn’t need our jobs we can leave. She says she even dares us to find a better boss and work environment than this place. This went on for about 20 minutes. Everyone heard her yelling at us. She even singed out me and another employee. Saying how we are hardly ever out. She made us very uncomfortable. But then says we should work as a team. Does she realize she just separated us as a team by saying we were hardly ever out while telling the rest of them they were out all the time? If there is a problem with people calling in sick too often then I feel she should address them and not try to put a wedge between us by yelling at us like we were children and threating our jobs. She then wrote up one employee for being out that day and told her to take a leave of absence if she is not feeling well. This person is her most dependable employee. She is an older woman who unfortunatly is having health issues and is sick a lot. She comes in sick all the time and we were worried about her. Her blood pressure was up so high oneday but said she couldn’t leave to go to the ER because the manager would yell at her and make her stay anyway. When this employee’s mom we dying in the hospital and she told our manager she had to leave because her mom was dying, the manager asked her can’t she tend to that after work?
She’s the type of manager who will not handle a problem before it get’s out of control. She will not address any issues until her boss tells her to handle it. Then when she trys to handle it she yells at us and tells us our jobs are not secure and we can leave.
It’s gotten to the point that most of us are depressed and some are very angry. There are no jobs out there right now and we feel trapped. Every Sunday I get very depressed and can’t do anything but sleep all day. I didn’t feel up to food shopping so we had fast food for dinner. I can’t take anymore I want so much to leave but can’t right now. I’m having health issues also and for some reason even if I just catch a cold I run a high fever and then it turns into broncitis and I’m out from work at least 3 days. I have to choose between going to the doctor or keeping my job. I don’t feel well and just want to feel better. I’m tired and depressed, I just want out but there are no jobs right now.

June 21, 2011 at 9:26 am(75) Aditya says:
Try working in Govt. job, any type, at least you will have a union to protect you against the bad behavior of bosses.
However you have to maintain your performance

April 12, 2009 at 1:25 pm(76) Susan Heathfield says:
Dear Trapped and Depressed and for anyone else who is feeling hopeless,

Remember that the only thing you control in your world is your reaction to the events around you. If you are in an untenable work situation with a boss who behaves in so many ways described in these comments, it is best to leave.

Because the economic situation makes job searching difficult right now and probably for the next couple of years, work on your own reactions and feelings. The situation is not about you. It is about the fact that you have a boss who does not know how to work effectively with people. Making yourself sick is allowing the boss to win. If the boss harangues you, use that voice in your head to repeat some affirming statement about how great you are. Tune the boss out.

I know these things are easier said than done. Have you reached out to coworkers to commiserate? Use of so much sick time is generally a sign of a toxic workplace. Can you talk to HR or your boss’s boss? (Do this with the knowledge that this will infuriate your boss.)

You might try telling her politely and privately how her words make you feel.
No matter what you decide to try, freshen up your resume and quietly job search. These articles will help you keep the fact that you are looking from your employer:
Confidential Job Searching Tips

Stealth Job Search.

Job Searching While Employed.

Read my articles for more thoughts on dealing with a bad boss.

Best wishes that you can solve your situations. A bad boss is one of life’s saddest situations.



May 2, 2009 at 12:26 am(77) Jessica says:
Oh where do I start??? He is inconsistent. One day he is happy, the next day he is angry and takes everything out of you. He is so insecure that he has to say to me “I am your boss. I deserve respect!”. He never praises staff or thanks them for their hard work. Actually the only time he communicates with his staff by sending them emails & telling them what they’ve done wrong. He never thinks to investigate & understand that maybe it wasn’t us who made the mistake. He belittles you in front of staff members & even in front of customers. He’ll send an email to me saying ‘Why the hell do these mistakes keep happening. What is the problem? Fix it now’ & ccs a customer into the email. I barely ever make mistakes & he’s the one who has to get his staff members to write emails for him because he cannot pull a few words together. He never acknowledges my hard work & lets certain staff members do absolutely nothing and get away with it. This is while I do their work for them. He considers team work and attitude to be more important that productivity. He compares staff members to a cancer cell or says he will not tolerate cancer in this team. He constantly says I’ll sack all 5 of you & hire five new staff. Since we’re in a recession, he says it is an employer’s market out there & he can choose whatever staff we want.
He spends all day talking rubbish to people and then complains that he has too much work to do. Then he complains that his staff members once spent ten minutes talking (which wasn’t the case). He fails to tell his staff that he isn’t coming into work. He puts his out of office assistant on from home yet can’t even send an email to his staff & tell them that he won’t be coming in that day. We only find out that he’s away when we send him an email. He’s the biggest hyprocrite ever. If there wasn’t a recession right now then I wouldn’t be working for him. He is completely out of his league & incompetent.

May 5, 2009 at 12:13 pm(78) joan says:
A bad boss is one who dumps all the work and datelines on you then dumps mindless photocopying work on your desk then goes off to chit chat with her friends and relatives on the phone. After that tells everybody she did the work. Tells everybody to follow the rules but changes the rules and breaks them herself. Reduces everybody else’s benefit so that she can seem like she herself is better than everybody else. Makes you do her work so that she can go home faster which means you end up having to stay back till the cows come home trying to finish your own work. Forever having sick children, husband or relatives to look after but went you call her on the phone there is a lot of laughter and music in the background and then next day comes with a lot of food she had spent the whole time cooking.

May 21, 2009 at 6:27 pm(79) Vickie says:
The manager is drunk on the job and sleeps on the job. The manager also stays out of work drunk. The manager throws things when in a drunken state.

May 21, 2009 at 6:44 pm(80) Vickie says:
This is it people! Read below.

When this is fully implemented in companies we will be less likely to encounter distractions – bad bosses!

I love this! The sooner, the better!

Work performance when teleworking can be measured using what is called a telework plan. A telework plan captures all the tasks an employee has been assigned to perform while teleworking. The supervisor and teleworker must discuss and agree upon the specific tasks and any expectations about the assignments, required products, and deadlines. The telework plan should be in alignment with an employee’s performance goals and objectives as denoted on their annual performance plan.

“If it’s done in the right manner and we have the right measures in place, telework should increase productivity [within the agency],”

Teleworking is simply working at an alternate location. Employees who telework are completing agency assignments in their home or at a convenient telework center. As a result, they are less likely to encounter distractions. Fewer distractions for these employees allow them to focus more time and undivided attention on completing their work.

However, there are some managers who are still leery of teleworking. Such managers express concerns and fears that employees are likely to accomplish less or nothing while teleworking because a manager is not present to physically manage them as they work.

Mgrs or supervisors who question the merits of teleworking would do well to reframe their way of thinking. Employees must also be fully aware of their responsibilities when teleworking.
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Re: Allstate Protects Their Bullies

Unread postby RatPak11 » Mon Apr 14, 2014 12:25 am ... d-boss.htm

More comments to: What Makes a Manager a Bad Boss?
By Susan M. Heathfield
April 1, 2014

May 21, 2009 at 6:47 pm(81) Vickie says:
Here is the solution to a bad boss!

Time to get ready bosses!

It will be the rule for every company in the future.

Work performance when teleworking can be measured using what is called a telework plan. A telework plan captures all the tasks an employee has been assigned to perform while teleworking. The supervisor and teleworker must discuss and agree upon the specific tasks and any expectations about the assignments, required products, and deadlines. The telework plan should be in alignment with an employee’s performance goals and objectives as denoted on their annual performance plan.

“If it’s done in the right manner and we have the right measures in place, telework should increase productivity [within the agency],”

Teleworking is simply working at an alternate location. He said that employees who telework are completing agency assignments in their home or at a convenient telework center. As a result, they are less likely to encounter distractions. Fewer distractions for these employees allow them to focus more time and undivided attention on completing their work.

However, there are some managers who are still leery of teleworking. Such managers express concerns and fears that employees are likely to accomplish less or nothing while teleworking because a manager is not present to physically manage them as they work.

Those managers or supervisors who question the merits of teleworking would do well to reframe their way of thinking. Employees must also be fully aware of their responsibilities when teleworking.

May 26, 2009 at 9:07 am(82) Gee says:
The worst boss is all of the things that are mentioned to vote on and then some. The absolute worst bosses are those that buy the corporate line as there own philosophy with the sole intent of asskissing those supervisors above him or her. These are the worst because they are ruthless and will “shark” you behind your back and sometimes, if they believe their position is strong enough, infront of your face. These kind will have their plans well-thought through and yyou will never see the broadside coming until you are demoted, fired, or ostricized.

May 28, 2009 at 1:26 pm(83) Frustrated_In_Bama says:
A “Bad Boss” is:
1. Informed by the wrong staff
2. Insecure in his own position
3. Witholds information from select staff
4. Knowingly and willingly allows co-workers to lie to cover their short commings
5. Misses deadlines and makes excuses
6. Got the promotion because of a friend
7. Has been terminated from multiple projects
8. Uses intimidation to cover his own shortcommings
9. Fails to utilize staff to their potential and capitalize on experience and talents

June 18, 2009 at 8:44 pm(84) Tom says:
A bad boss is someone who wants you to take on a portion of their responsibilites telling you you’re the first person they thought of because of all your good qualities. But there’s no additional compensation along with the additional responsibilities. A bad boss wants a qualified employee to train an unqualified employee to do a job that is considered a promotion instead of promoting the qualified employee in order to keep the qualified employee in their current job so the work still gets done and the boss looks good to her superiors. How do some people sleep at night?

July 16, 2009 at 12:39 pm(85) AC says:
A bad boss possesses a combination of traits that individually contain little bearing pressure but when combined force subordinates to to exert their force outward on the front door. For some reason my manager’s boss doesn’t seem to realize that the subordinate is not only incompetent but lacks the skills necessary to lead a team of reports. I’m taking my new job with pride. As a result, my old company I’m leaving is paying 200% of my annual income so that I can have a positive reference. I would have retired at my current company but Corporate America promotes career suicide when a subordinate speaks.

July 20, 2009 at 1:39 pm(86) k says:
1-Burned out
2-Bad mouths employees to other employees and worst, does the same with customers
3-Gives no organized directions
4-Only focuses on the negative and doesn’t give any positive feed back for a good job. A pat on the back once in awhile goes a long way.
5-Plays favorites between employees

August 10, 2009 at 2:40 pm(87) jta says:
Look at management in total – if all bosses are bad, chances are the company and HR dept are at the heart of the issue. Take some serious time to find another job – pick a culture that’s right for you. Life is too short to be miserable and bad days have a way to spill over to the family. You will be a changed person when you make a move – the best option you have to exercise in extreme cases is to move on.

June 21, 2011 at 9:21 am(88) Aditya says:
You are 100% right

August 10, 2009 at 4:37 pm(89) Al says:
I read most of the comments on this subject. I just want to agree with most and add working for a family owned business puts one in the position to come in contact with family members who would never be hired in the outsode world yet they become the boss (bad boss).

August 10, 2009 at 6:05 pm(90) Tina says:
Bad bosses come under such a huge umbrella its difficult to categorize just one- unqualified is typically ranked highest. I have had every crazy boss you can imagine- Quick examples:

Eg 1Worked for one company for five plus years:- Promised a well deserved promotion in an email. Got pregnant that year and the promotion was refused until 6 months after a return from only 12 weeks maternity- not to mention a lot of my projects panned out in my absence for the company giving great gains. The very day I was handed the promotion I also handed in my notice.

Eg 2
The very next position had great pay great responsibilty but soon turned into the longest nightmare of my life. The day I got the position the manager asked- (now I’m not due to start the job for another month) if I could just run a personal errand for her if I had the time. I thought sure I just signed a lovely new contract why not? I should haved turned and ran posthaste!!!!! I spent the next three years jumping through hoops to keep a narcissistic maniac happy- including babysitting her kids!!!! Oh and I also worked for free in her other business- outside my remit!

Eg3. The perfect position or so I thought. I ended up taking on more than I could handle because we had staff out on extended leave -illness and the like. We were told there is not to be any leave also but it appeared to only apply to me. I only stayed because of the economic downturn- got so stressed and began to get really ill myself. Was often given extremely large projects that typically are handled by a team but because I displayed the aptitude for it I accomplished it but at the expense of my own health. I often had to fudge credentials at my boss’s urging for company personnel to get certain proposals. I never felt good about it and I’m glad to be gone working at a new career:)

I now realise that a bad boss becomes a bad boss because we allow them too. Set your limits early on how you should talk to me- what my limits are and what lines I will not croos. I am no ones gopher, rug or the like- I have much to contribute and much to bring to the table but I will not go outside the employee manager boundaries and no I am not your best friend!

August 10, 2009 at 8:11 pm(91) catlady3 says:
Learn from my mistakes. Don’t expect your boss to be your friend. Don’t expect your co-workers to keep your confidences. Keep your private life private. Do your job, not everyone else’s. I loved my last job. I was doing the work for myself and my immediate superior. When he retired I did his job and mine for a year. It took that long to replace him. His replacement treated me like dirt under his feet and refused to listen to me at all. I left before I made a fool or myself or killed him. Whichever came first. It’s a shame. I loved the job and was good at it. I just hit limit.

August 10, 2009 at 9:19 pm(92) Cee Cee says:
I have a bad boss.

She belittles me or puts me down everyday. I make one small mistake and you would have thought I took her business down the drain. I’ve actually become depressed working for my boss. I have been looking for another job but it’s very tough in this job market!

She talks negative about her staff to other staff members (when that staff member knows she has probably talked about him or her).

She never says anything to uplift her staff or encourage them.

August 11, 2009 at 1:44 am(93) abigail stardust says:
The boss I dislike is the one who saves up every mistake you make until your annual performance appraisal. I believe a performance appraisal should contain no surprises because two way communication sorted stuff out when it happened

August 11, 2009 at 2:34 pm(94) Karen says:
A bad boss is one that keeps telling you he is going to promote you, even has you shift your workload and take on a whole new project, only to fire you for no just cause other then downsizing. And you know that it was planned all along, because you get to see the numbers and you noticed that your salary wasn’t in the next year budget. Yes this happened to me.

August 13, 2009 at 6:13 pm(95) inez says:
My boss threaten me because i have tried to extended my leave on hoiliday, so my boss threaten me that if i cannot make it to work or into the country my job is going to someone else.

August 14, 2009 at 5:55 am(96) darkstar says:
- Micromanagers. Face it guys, unless you’re doing the job, don’t try to tell people how to do it, because 99% of the time you don’t really know what’s going on and will waste people’s time and piss them off. LEARN to telll people clearly WHAT you want delivered, DON’T tell people HOW to deliver it.

- Have a woman at my company (a boss of sorts, but not my direct report) who lies and bullshits about others’ performance in order to try to protect herself. Super sensitive to questions or constructive criticism. Demanding and rude.

August 16, 2009 at 11:34 pm(97) diana says:
Stupid companies encourage employees to take the courses for retail management and their managers know nothing about management, they think a manager should control and treat employees as…. They dont know that the employees are the mirror. My ex managers in a huge corporate were controlling. They liked to humiliate employees. Anyway I quit, they were miserable ppl, so they wanted to make eveybody miserable…

September 1, 2009 at 10:48 am(98) ep says:
I worked for a woman who was vulgar, literally screamed at me while standing in the hallway for everyone to hear for being late for a meeting by 2 minutes, would tell me my work was incorrect but not tell me what was wrong, broke rules that everyone else in the department were expected to follow – eg listening to phone messages using speaker, having her cell phone ring repeatedly during the day, taking personal calls and talking in a loud voice so everyone could hear her personal business, and last but not least, exhibited poor personal hygiene and behavior then made jokes about it! The VP saw all of this but looked the other way. The last straw was when she lied about things I was saying. I luckily found a new job and left.

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Re: Allstate Protects Their Bullies

Unread postby RatPak11 » Mon Apr 14, 2014 7:07 pm ... ng-support

Surviving Workplace Mobbing: Seeking Support
Knowing who to turn to and who to avoid when under fire may help you to survive.
Published on April 8, 2013 by Janice Harper, Ph.D. in Beyond Bullying

By the time a person realizes they are being “mobbed,” which is to say, the target of collective aggression aimed at expelling them from the group, the abuse is usually well under way. And once under way, the most aggressive people are often the very people the mobbing target was most close to—in other words, people they would otherwise turn to for support when it’s needed the most. In that case, who is the target to turn to? Whether at an early stage when someone in management takes aim, or later when the workforce has joined in the aggression and taken collective aim, there are certain sources of support the target can and should seek out, and others that they absolutely should not ask for help.

Avoid seeking support from anyone at work The first thing most people do when the boss goes after them is gripe to their coworkers. They don’t usually complain to too many people, but their two or three close allies will certainly understand, they figure. Besides, at the early stage, it’s just an example of what a jerk the boss is, of how unfair the place can be, or just a little snickering gossip. But these are the people who, should mobbing ensue, will be the most aggressive and damaging to the worker (for reasons I’ll detail and explain in a future post). The same goes for members of any similarly situated cohort—turning to other women if you’re a woman, other men if you’re a man, other members of the same religious or racial group or nationality, can and will backfire in most cases. So when that adverse review comes through or the boss scolds behind closed doors, avoid telling any coworkers—even if everyone you work with claims to be behind you. Avoid sharing your concerns with this group, and you may well avoid triggering a mob.

Avoid HR and other internal investigative offices if at all possible As most anyone who has read anything on workplace mobbing or bullying knows, HR is not your friend. They represent the interests of management and no matter how abusive if not illegal managerial practices, the Human Resources employees will be responsible to their employer, not the employees. Moreover, diversity and affirmative action offices that ostensibly investigate claims of discrimination and harassment are not much better (and sometimes even worse). If your conflict involves discrimination or harassment, you may have to file an internal report or cooperate in an investigation. But be cautious before you do so because it may be the act that turns a resolvable conflict into a full-scale mobbing. Objectivity is rare if not impossible in any internal department because those who are in charge report to your employer. Avoid these offices at all costs, and do not expect a fair and honest investigation should you not be able to avoid them. The most powerless players are the ones most likely to be found culpable, and that may well be you.

Do not share your story on blogs or appeal for help in an online forum It may seem counterintuitive to avoid the very sources of support and information that enable people to anonymously seek advice and support from others going through much the same. But it’s better to just read these online discussions than join in them, at least until the issue is resolved and you’re far removed from the workplace. Here’s why. First, it’s not as anonymous as you might think. A google of your email address or a quick google of your name prefaced by “in blog:” can bring up a cascade of comments you’ve posted, and when management goes after you, they google. Second, anything done on a computer owned or under the control of your employer, can and will be secretly monitored by most employers once mobbing is underway. Never underestimate an aggressive employer’s determination to destroy you.

Third, most people who end up suing an employer never in a million years thought it would ever get that far, but just in case it does, beware. If your conflict turns into litigation, under the laws of discovery you will be asked to reveal the names of anyone you have discussed your complaints with, anything you have written or posted about your case and its claims, and anyone you’ve emailed. Your work computers will be searched by forensic specialists who will pull off anything you’ve ever written or deleted, any site you’ve ever visited and email you’ve ever sent. And if you’ve used your personal computers for any work activities or communications about your case, you may even have to turn over the hard drives to your own computers, along with information about where these online postings have been made (and which may in turn lead to claims of libel against you).

Finally, many, but not all, of these online resources encourage venting, anger and revenge. They will do more to exacerbate your emotional flooding than diminish it. It is not in your best interests to remain in a state of anger when you are being mobbed. You need to remain calm and in control and rational, no matter how unjust the aggression against you may be, and how justified your anger.

Similarly, do not turn to the media for support Many people think if they get the media’s attention, their employer will be shamed into compliance with the law or otherwise treating workers fairly. But as every whistleblower knows, the one who is shamed is usually the one making a stink. Once the media turn their attention to a workplace conflict, no matter how blatant any moral or legal violations, the employer will go on the attack and portray the worker as emotionally and mentally unstable, as having a history of making complaints, of bullying coworkers, and of having a history of poor performance (even if the record states otherwise; the employer will insist that the trail of glowing reviews shows how it bent over backwards to be encouraging and supportive of the difficult employee). Worse, because the worker will be emotionally overwhelmed, they very likely might appear crazy to anyone listening to them, including to reporters. The media rarely help a worker being mobbed, but very often the media attention they might cast on a worker—even if favorable to the worker—serves to anger and alienate coworkers and professional colleagues. Beware.

So where does the worker who is under attack find support?

Turning to friends and family is essential But it is equally essential not to exhaust them with the never-ending details of the conflict and the incomprehensible babble that emotional flooding provokes. Take deep breaths, focus on their needs, listen to their stories, and learn to stop yourself when your talk becomes repetitious and trivial. (And for those friends who also work with you or in your profession, remember they are coworkers first, friends second, in matters pertaining to mobbing. No matter how loyal they are to you, your loyalty to them is best expressed by not putting them in the uncomfortable position of having to side against an employer. Ultimately, they will not, so if you want to keep them as friends, don’t turn to them for support in this matter.)

Join or engage in groups based on shared faith or interests Become active in your church, mosque or synagogue, join a hobby-based or interest group, or start volunteering for a cause you care about. The important thing is not to find people who will listen to your problems, but to find people who will care about you and enjoy your company—as well as to get out of your own world of internalized pain. It’s very difficult not to vent about what is happening to you when you are under the collective attack of a workplace mob. But doing so will undermine the very thing you need most—people to like and respect you. Mobbing entails collective shunning by people you once cared about and worked among. Having them turn on you is extremely painful, and to counter that pain and its consequences, finding support not for your cause, but for your very being, is critical. So seek out friendship, camaraderie and caring from others who will help you to feel valued during a time when others will cruelly insist that you are not. And to the extent you can confide in people confidentially, such as clergy, by all means do so.

Lawyers, Therapists and Relevant Agencies or Unions These are the professionals whose job it is to help you. Do not hesitate to seek them out should you feel you need them. But some cautionary advice before you do. Once a lawyer appears publicly, which is to say, writes to your employer that he or she is representing you, your employer will do two things. First, they will become all the more determined to defeat you. Second, they will notify all your coworkers and supervisors to retain any and all emails and other communications to, from or about you and forward them to management. And when they receive that notice, your coworkers are going to resent you for pulling them into “your” mess, causing them extra work, and especially, invading their privacy. Anything else contained in such communications, such as their own complaints about the boss or others will have to be submitted to management, thereby putting them at risk. So if you hire an attorney, have them counsel you privately without making an appearance until when and if it becomes absolutely necessary.

As for therapists, keep in mind that their notes and testimony will likely be subpoenaed if you file litigation against your employer, so remember that confidentiality has its limits. Be sure, as well, that your therapist is knowledgeable about group aggression and group psychology and its impacts. As for relevant agencies, such as the EEOC, or your union, you may have to file reports with them to protect your legal interests, but know that when you do, your employer will become more aggressive and accusatory.

Mobbing is an extreme form of collective bullying that not only damages people psychologically, socially and emotionally, but it can have devastating economic impacts as the target fights for their job and career, and often loses both. In order to minimize the chances of a conflict turning to mobbing, it is imperative you not turn to your coworkers for support. But in order to minimize the impact of mobbing once it ensues, it is imperative you do find support elsewhere. But as you do so, always remember that far more important to proving your case against your employer, is never losing sight of your intrinsic value. Mobbing entails denying the target has any value. No matter what is happening at work, you do have value. Seek out those who will treasure your humanity, not those who will deny it.


HR is usually doing the mobbing
Submitted by Fleabell on April 9, 2013 - 8:17am.
My experience has been that HR is actually the source of the instigating "mobster" who gets everyone else to fall into line behind her (and it's always a "her").

Submitted by Janice Harper on April 9, 2013 - 9:30am.
Whether the instigator is from HR or HR is acting under the direction of management often depends on the organizational structure and culture of the workplace. Understanding how power is formally and informally exercised and who reports to whom helps to better understand how the process operates. HR does, however, often act aggressively whether or not they are instigating it or serving someone else.

And it's not always a her. Be wary of making and assuming blanket generalizations based on one experience and/or one profession.

Your suggestions for finding
Submitted by Fly on the wall on April 9, 2013 - 8:53pm.
Your suggestions for finding support won't work in a small town, especially if you moved there for the job and the employer has a history there. You'll find that the entire freaking town will report back to your employer, because the entire town is in some way related to someone who works there.

There's some truth to that
Submitted by Janice Harper, Ph.D. on April 9, 2013 - 9:06pm.
Paranoid as that sounds, small towns (like professional circles) can quickly shun anyone under attack. Once you are identified as an outsider, and you find yourself at war with a local employer that contributes to the town's economic base, the welcome mats get pulled. In that case, sometimes moving is a wise choice, though I understand not everyone can move. A good subject for a future post; thank you for raising it.

Yep, sounds paranoid until
Submitted by Fly on the wall on April 9, 2013 - 9:22pm.
Yep, sounds paranoid until you experience it. But then, so does mobbing. "What happens at the girl party stays at the girl party!". Yeah? So why does my chiropractor's wife know all about it? Oh, yeah, small town gossip.

Fortunately, after getting the boot for not drinking the koolaid, I'm in school to get a new skill that I can take to another town. They can wallow in their little clique.

Discriminatory Mobbing
Submitted by EEOC Information on June 16, 2013 - 9:10pm.
It is true that reporting and addressing mobbing in the workplace is no walk in the park, but there is hope. The EEOC has held a Twitter Town Hall where the subject was addressed.

Here is a link to the Storify slideshow: ... sector/s...

Submitted by Chomi Prag on July 3, 2013 - 4:56pm.
I have written a book that addresses the seriousness of workplace mobbing in the courtroom setting and how friends in positions of authority help each other out.

It is available on Amazon.

PAPERBACK - ... sr_1_1?i...

KINDLE - ... _B00DQDH...
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Re: Allstate Protects Their Bullies

Unread postby RatPak11 » Mon Apr 14, 2014 7:22 pm ... vastating/

Op-ed: Workplace bullying: Isolating, devastating
By: KATHERINE A. HERMES | March 19, 2014

If you knew that 900,000 Connecticut residents experienced a particular problem at work, wouldn’t you want to fix that problem? That’s how many workers in our state have experienced abusive conduct on the job.

There are problems great and small, global and local. But when you are the target of a bully, the problems are so personal and isolating that a wider world ceases to exist. My friend Marlene was a conservationist, a birdwatcher, a lover of literature and film, an enthusiastic cook, a traveler, a scientist—but once the bully had hold of her, a suicide.

Her death catapulted me into a movement, founded by the Workplace Bullying Institute, to try to stop workplace bullying. I discovered that workplace abuse was not illegal unless the campaign of destruction was directly related to the protected status of the person being bullied. If the bully did not harass the target because of race, religion, sex, age, and so forth, it was legal conduct.

Public policy dictates that we make sure our citizens are healthy. We want people employed, and we want businesses to thrive. An unhealthy workplace, in which one person can shatter lives without remedy, makes no sense. Thirty-five percent of American workers have experienced abusive conduct at work. Fifteen percent have been affected as bystanders. Bullying causes absenteeism, lost profits, untold stress upon families and sometimes death.

Connecticut Healthy Workplace Advocates worked with (now retired) Sen. Edith Prague and Rep. Kevin Ryan when they were co-chairs of the Labor and Public Employees Committee. We proposed a Healthy Workplace Bill that would allow a private right of action for abusive conduct in the workplace. Since 2006, the Connecticut General Assembly has seen workplace bullying bills but has acted on none.

The time to enact the Healthy Workplace Bill is here. It has been introduced in 25 states. Far from being anti-business, the bill is an answer to a problem for businesses. In anti-discrimination legislation, the company is the one on the hook. In the Healthy Workplace Bill, the company is only responsible if it turns a blind eye. If it takes steps to correct the situation, the company can avoid litigation and perhaps save itself from a destructive workplace culture. Good policy is the point of the law.

Workplace bullying is like domestic violence. It is daily terror, waged in the form of verbal abuse, intimidation and work sabotage. Unlike domestic violence, in which victims are mostly women, workplace bullying has a growing number of male targets. Anyone can be a target, and no one is ever prepared for it.

The Healthy Workplace Bill is sound legislation. In an age where many people are skeptical of further government regulation, concerned it will discourage employers, states have been tiptoeing around “the business lobby.” In this situation, the state ignores the risks of workplace bullying at its peril, and so do businesses. The Healthy Workplace Bill takes a balanced approach.

As a professor watching my students enter the workforce, as an advocate for healthy workplaces, and in memory of my friend, I want to see the HWB passed. Let’s get to work!

Katherine A. Hermes, J.D., Ph.D., is a professor of history at Central Connecticut State University and volunteer co-coordinator for Connecticut Healthy Workplace Advocates, Torrington, CT.


Thomas Panetta • College of Hard Knocks
A wonderful job on the Op-Ed Katherine. It is truly
debilitating, I personally know this first hand. It has consumed my life in many different ways. The law of our land has a gaping hole in it that needs to be plugged with
common sense, emotional
intelligence and a moral obligation from everyone involved to change this monumental injustice in our legal system
March 20 at 4:15pm

Mary Bagnaschi Teacher/Guide at My Higher Self
There is a CT Supreme Court motion currently pending for a CT Grand Jury Investigation into the political hate crime and work place violence known as work place bullying I am a long standing victim of in this state- at the hands of the very government, elected officials and agencies whose very job, mission statements and legal, moral, ethical duties were to enforce the equal laws that would have protected me. This is my third motion and attempt at the Supreme Court level since Oct 2012, dozens of attempts at the Superior Court level since April 2012, and since April 2008 at the CT Chief State Attorney level and since January 2006 at the CT Attorney General level and since 2003 at the State CHRO/EEOC, City of Torrington, Dept of Labor, Governor, etc. etc. etc. level to address the long standing problems of work place violence andone of its many known methods of illegal retaliation, used against me sine 2003 after filing my first discrimination complaint. I am a classic case book example of work place bullying that will prove the entire government and public union employees use this method of war fare to divide and conquer against any and all dissidents and opposers of their anti-American socialist take over of every government agency and its elected officials. This case will make history and case law that will open the door for future litigants and the proper legal venue which is a Grand Jury Investigation. In addition, I am the National and CT Liberty Alliance Litchfield County Coordinator. We reconstituted the Common Law Grand Jury in every County last Saturday. In a few weeks the Clerks of every Superior Court house will receive our signed, sealed, notorized documents demanding our Constitutional, God-given, unalienable rights to the keys of the court house where Common Law will thwart out justice from here. I was illegally fired in 2006, I continue to be a victim of gross illegal retaliation, a component of work place violence and a tool used against me for over 10 years, including the past 3 involving the police and judiciary against me to try to silence and discredit me- a very well known dirty trick of the labor trade industry. The book and work of Gary Namie and Ruth Namie out of the Work Place Bully Institute and two articles written by Kathy Hermes about Marlene's suicide which were posted in the Repubican American in 2005 and 2006 led me to investigate the facts that I am and have been a long standing victim of this immoral illegal behavior for most of my life. That is about to change in this upcoming case in CT and Common Law Grand Jury Investigations, in addition to the mandatory investigations the US Justice Dept must conduct upon receipt of my 4 packets of letters and material evidence that demand a thorough, non biased, non corrupt investigation. Justice is coming, Marlene!
March 22 at 11:23am

Krishna Zane Lopez • University of Colorado Denver
Bullies are truly devastating. They ruin the child's future, in a way of emotional pain. A child or a person that is being Bullied?? Has a very low self-esteem.. They end up hurting themselves, or worst? Commit suicide. Parents should help their children by having conversation and also by giving them their Panic Button for their safety. Here's a cool application named Safekidzone. Just check out this link:
March 20 at 2:00pm

Madeleine François • California City, California
Bullying can be devastating for child's confidence and self-esteem. They need lots of love and support, both at home and wherever the bullying is happening. They also need to know that you will take action to prevent any further bullying. You can give support by listening and talking with them and offer them them some compassion and support. I would like to share this link, about a service on how to protect your children. Here is the link:
March 20 at 4:06am

Jean Lampman Jones • MT HOREBE HIGH SCHOOL
How much longer before these bills are passed and how many lives will have been taken by the time the laws are past?
March 22 at 6:20pm
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Re: Allstate Protects Their Bullies

Unread postby RatPak11 » Mon Apr 14, 2014 7:32 pm ... l?page=all

Apr 3, 2014, 5:10pm EDT
How you can prevent workplace bullying at your company
Peter Dean, Guest Columnist

There has been a surge of insightful research at Harvard and others universities focusing on institutional corruption, investigating the kind of influence across institutions and organizations that weakens the entity’s effectiveness, as well as the public trust. In light of recent stories appearing on national television, it also seems prudent to disclose another workplace issue that weakens effectiveness, efficiency and confidence every day in the workplace, that being bulling. Bullying is a negative influence of interpersonal corruption or the uncivil interpersonal interaction among individuals at work.

Millions of adults are affected by workplace bullying – defined as the repeated and deliberate interpersonal behaviors by supervisors, subordinates or peers intended to demean, humiliate, belittle, intimidate, torment or to instill fear in others and by doing so create a hostile work environment with far-reaching lose-lose consequences that corrupt the company and its productivity. According to The Workplace Bullying Institute, over 53 million employees have experienced bullying at work.

Workplace bullying can take the form of macro-Inequities and micro-Inequities. Macro-inequities are observable actions such as blatant humiliation, obvious verbal abuse, violation of personal space, threats to job security, job sabotage, misuse of authority, deliberate destruction of relations with others at work and punishing behavior (i.e. pounding on a table, yelling or screaming). Micro-inequities are repeated, more subtle slights that can be either verbal or non-verbal in nature and that send devaluing messages intended to discourage or impair work with the accumulative effect of undermining confidence.

As micro-inequities are more difficult to discern and to take action against, we at TLE/LBD are undergoing research to identify and measure their prevalence. Some examples of bullying micro-inequities in the workplace are: cutting down your ideas before you get a chance to complete your thoughts; constantly being interrupted while you are talking; not being introduced and then being ignored; discounting your thoughts, ideas and feelings; talking to someone who keeps looking at his watch, avoiding eye-contact and not really being attentive to you; rolling the eyes when someone not wanted enters the conversation; and being totally left out of the dialogue and discussion even though it is your project.

The overall effect of bullying macro-inequities and micro-inequities is an unhappy, non-inclusive work environment with low employee retention and the company not achieving its business goals. In fact, the business costs include: the harm to a company’s reputation both internally and externally in the inability to foster trust; the economic damage due to absences from work, the unnecessary and expensivereplacement of talent, loss of intellectual capital and little diversity of thought; the mental health issues as a result of panic attacks at work leading to depression; and physical health ailments that can manifest from stress such as hypertension.

There are a number of reasons given in the research to describe what drives a bully. Those include: the need for control, personal insecurity, stress, boredom, personal unhappiness, the misuse of power in a management position (ego), fear and the most obvious flaw, a lack of empathy. As coaches, we have seen an increase in the need to teach empathy skills to executives who have become detached from the people that do the work. In fact, we recommend the skill-set of listening, engaged understanding and fully attending to another, as a comprehensive empathy skill.

There are some things an individual can do to eliminate workplace bullying. After one commits to stopping the negative impact of bullying, he or she should: document incidents; confront the bully with the incidents; continue to document until you see the behavior change; if it doesn’t change, build consensus with others and then expose the bully with their involvement. What leaders can do is to use the power of the position as a bully-pulpit and communicate often and clearly that the workplace is for completion of quality work and maintaining good working relations with other. Leaders can encourage open, honest communication among members with well-designed feedback loops and uphold the leadership skills everyone can practice, listening, empathizing, attending and practicing mutual respect during stressful situations fulfilling the expectation of civility in the workplace.

Peter Dean, Ph.D., is founder and president of Leaders By Design at The Leader's Edge/Leaders By Design in Bala Cynwyd.
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