What to do About Workplace Bullies

If you have been experiencing problems with workplace bullies and are thinking of reporting them to the human resources (HR) department, don’t think about it, says one expert, since some companies, especially the big ones, are considered breeding grounds for such culprits.

Babs Ryan, a self-described “big-business escapee” says that big corporations are hotbeds for bullies. And sites that in some studies, companies fire only one percent of workplace bullies. Meanwhile, only seven percent are reprimanded. This often results in a worse situation at the office. Often, these workplace bullies are fabricating lies or assigning tasks with impossible deadlines, if they are your superiors.

“More often, human resources staff turn against the target,” says Ryan, who wrote the book, “America’s Corporate Brain Drain.” “In most big companies, the person who complains about the problem is the problem. That’s why today only three percent of bullied employees bother to file complaints. The rest start circulating their resumes.”

In a U.S. Hostile Workplace Survey, HR departments only took negative actions against the targets at a rate of 32 percent, while more than half of the reported cases were left unaccomplished.

In Ryan’s book, the shrugging of shoulders of senior managers as well as the HR department on cases of workplace bullies pushes the top employees to leave the company and look for another job.

According to Ryan, workplace bullies often target employees who are popular, competent, and better educated. These people are those who can easily reach positions like in senior management.

Thus, the best employees tend to choose to spend their time working in smaller companies.

Interestingly, Ryan said that it is indeed easy to look for toxic employers and employees. Workplace bullies often talk about their coworkers, while workers talk about ways of improving their services and products. On the other hand, toxic employers teach their employees ways of dealing with difficult people while genuine employers fire difficult people from the workplace. Finding a better job is ultimately the best revenge one employee can do, Ryan concluded.

Find out more about Ryan’s book, America’s Corporate Brain Drain.


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