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9 Tips For Handling A Workplace Bully In-Person And Virtually

Everyone has the right to work in a safe, happy environment, even in the virtual workplace. The fact is, sometimes work can be a pain, but you should never feel threatened, humiliated, or victimized at your job. If you do, this could be bullying and it’s not okay for you to ignore it. If you're unsure about how to deal with bullies at work, there are some tips you can take to handling it.

9 Tips For Handling A Workplace Bully In-Person And Virtually
9 Tips For Handling A Workplace Bully In-Person And Virtually

1. Ask for the bullying behavior to stop

Yes, maybe you just in a terrible joke of your colleagues, so it’s a big step to accuse a co-worker of bullying behavior, so it’s totally understandable to feel nervous about telling someone what’s been happening and how their behavior affects you.

Ask for the bullying behavior to stop
Figure 1. Yes, you have a right to ask to stop the bullying behavior

You can try talking to the person who is having the bullying behavior, and explaining that this is unfair or offensive to you.

2. Don't treat this like personal things

You should remember that when someone is bullying you, it's more about them than it is about you. Usually, a bully is acting of their insecurity, jealously, or some mental problem.

In fact, the targets of bullies are often high performers that do well at work. So, having healthy emotional boundaries that keep you from reacting or feeling bad about yourself when workplace bullying occurs is a great way to defend yourself.

3. Keep a private record

It’s hard to remember every bully action that occurs to you. But those actions are super-important if you want to report bullying. You should keep a personal record to help you remember the specifics and to show how frequently you’ve been treated badly at work, or virtually.

Your note should have the date and time, exactly what they’re doing or saying, where it happens and who else was there.

4. Check your workplace bullying policy

Check whether your work has a bullying or harassment policy. You might have been given a copy of this when you signed to start working. It’ll give you an idea of who to talk to, what steps you should follow, and how the person who is bullying you will be affected.

5. Talk to your higher-ups or HR

You might need to discuss it with your manager or human resources after reading all the company’s policies about workplace bullying. Choose the course of action that feels best for you for your situation.

Talk to your higher-ups or HR
Figure 2. Discuss with your HR department is a great way to stop bullying

And here’s the point: when addressing your concerns, focus on the negative impact on productivity, wellbeing, and morale while staying professional and calm.

6. You should take care of your wellbeing

This problem is quite easy to understand, many people are afraid to speak up for themself when they are being bullied. They might be concerned about what others will think. And at worse, if the bully is their boss or someone in a position of power, they will more worry because it might affect their income at work.

However, bullying can have a negative impact on your overall well-being, both mentally and physically. So you should take care of yourself by pulling resources together to support you. A mental health professional is an excellent place to start to help you deal with the stress of bullying they might have solutions on how you can handle it.

7. Address the issue directly and related problems

This won't always be a possible or comfortable solution, but speak up and stand your ground when communicating with a bully may be the best solution for the problem.

Stay calm and rise above, take the higher ground and try to respond in a rational and professional manner. There's no point in trying to beat a bully at their own game, as it will only add fuel to the fire. Instead, address the conflict head-on by letting them know about how their actions affect you.

8. Leave the company, it's not worth it

Your wellbeing is most important, and without it, you're no good to anyone or with any job. If you have done all you can to eliminate the bullying, but it's still occurring, then it might be time to explore other companies and leave the organization.

Leave the company, it's not worth it
Figure 3. After trying everything and the bullying behavior still occur, you should leave

Yes, this tip can make you feel like the bully won if this is the way you choose, but when you take care of yourself and leave a bad situation, you're the winner. Also, you want to know you're working for an organization that takes care of its employees and puts a stop to abusive behavior when it occurs in the workplace environment.

9. Use the laws to protect yourself

You’ve tried everything, but the bullying still won’t let up? Even you have already left the company? It’s probably time to report the abuse to someone outside of your work.

Make things official by submitting an anti-bullying form through the Fair Work Commission. They can also give you information and their anti-bullying process and help you submit the form if you need support.

If you are a whistleblower and are being bullied at work as a result, you are protected by law.

In Conclusion

Whilst bullying is, of course, a serious matter and can cause stress and anxiety and lead to absence and other problems, those need to stop, in the workplace or in virtually.

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