You can do all you can to ensure you have a safe and happy workplace, but that does not necessarily mean that workplace bullying will never occur. The problem among adults across all types of workplaces is so bad, that as many as 75 percent of people surveyed have experienced bullying in the workplace, whether they were on the receiving end or witnessed an incident.
As a business owner, it is critical that you know how to spot signs of workplace bullying and then carry through with the proper investigations to find the source of the problem and put a stop to it. Yet, it can be difficult to spot bullying. Check out these common signs that workplace bullying is occurring in your workplace.
Be sure to notice instances of exclusion or isolation.
There are some points in the workday when employees would normally work together or be together in general. If you notice a sole individual or certain few who are always alone, it could be a sign that they are being bullied.
Excluding or isolating a fellow employee from group activities is one of the ways that bullies successfully continue with their derogatory behavior. Therefore, take note if there are "loners" in the workforce who shy away from being associated with everyone else.
Pay close attention to aggressive behavior from certain employees.
Bullies are not always obviously aggressive, but in a lot of cases, they are. If there are certain individuals in your workforce who are louder, cruder, and more aggressive, keep an eye on them. These people could also be aiming their aggression at other individuals when your supervisors are not present.
Watch out for those who undermine someone else's work.
Workplace bullying is not always name-calling and straight-out ridicule or verbal communications. In some situations, workplace bullying is something that is more sneaky and underhanded, such as when one employee undermines another's work.
If there is a certain employee who seems to struggle more than most to get their job done, try and get to the bottom of the reason. A bully could be deliberately sabotaging their efforts or doing things to show that employee down.
Look closely at any reports made of improper conduct.
It takes a lot for an employee to admit they are being mistreated by a workplace bully because, as an adult, this can feel like a shameful thing. If an employee steps forward to report inappropriate behavior from a certain individual, make a real effort to investigate what they are saying.
It's easy to shrug off incidents that don't sound like a big deal when they really are a major problem. If you are having trouble recognizing bullying issues in the workplace, contact a workplace bullying investigator such as committed 2 change consulting to discuss your options.