Workplace Bullying

Workplace Bullying

What is workplace bullying?

If asked to think about what is bullying, what pops into your head? Commonly, people think that bullying is limited to physically aggressive behaviours enacted toward (and by) young people within a school environment. However, bullying is not limited to just young people, nor just to school settings. Bullying can occur across various contexts, including the workplace environment. Workplace bullying refers to ongoing harmful and inappropriate behaviour directed toward a person or group of people within a workplace setting. Workplace bullying can occur through various forms, and is not limited to physical aggression; it can also occur through verbal, social, or psychological means, and often results in a person having to work within a hostile or intimidating workplace atmosphere.


What does workplace bullying look like?

Workplace bullying can take many forms. Directed toward a person or group of people, some of the most common forms of workplace bullying include:

  • Verbal abuse, such as persistent criticism, insults, name-calling, or offensive language.
  • Social exclusion: deliberate isolation or exclusion of someone or a group of people from work-related activities, events, or social interactions.
  • Intimidation: aggressive behaviour, threats, or actions with the purpose to instil fear or anxiety.
  • Undermining Work: Sabotaging a person’s work, spreading false rumours, or withholding information that could impact a person from completing their work.
  • “Micromanaging”: Unreasonably scrutinizing an employee’s work or imposing excessive control over their tasks.
  • Unfair Criticism: Singling out employees for mistakes, even when not justified, and consistently assigning blame unfairly.
  • Work Overload or Underload: Deliberately assigning too much or too little work to negatively impact an employee’s work performance.


What are the possible impacts of workplace bullying?

Workplace bullying can have negative consequences, both for the people targeted and the overall work environment. It may lead to increased stress, anxiety, depression, decreased job satisfaction, and even physical health issues. Additionally, it can negatively impact teamwork, productivity, and the overall morale of the workplace.


What can you do if you’re experiencing workplace bullying?

Experiencing workplace bullying can be emotionally challenging. Seeking support can be an important step in helping to manage impacts to your mental health. Some tips for if you are experiencing workplace bullying include:

  • Confiding in someone: Share your experiences with a trusted friend, family member, or colleague. Having someone who can provide emotional support and perspective on the situation can help relieve some of the emotional burden you may be experiencing.
  • Building a support network: Connect with other colleagues who may have experienced or witnessed the bullying. Having a support network can be valuable, and collectively addressing the issue may lead to a more effective resolution.
  • Seeking professional psychological support: Consider reaching out to a mental health professional, such as a psychologist, who can help you cope with the emotional impact of bullying. They can also help provide strategies for dealing with stress and anxiety, as well as help you toenhance and practice your assertive communication skills when it comes to setting boundaries.
  • Documenting the bullying: Keep a record of incidents, including dates, times, locations, and details of the bullying behaviour. This documentation can be useful if you decide to report the bullying to higher authorities.
  • Talking to Human Resources (HR): If you feel comfortable, discuss the issue with someone in your organization’s HR department. They can provide guidance on the company’s policies and procedures for handling workplace bullying.


Remember that everyone deserves a safe and respectful work environment.If you think that you may be experiencing workplace bullying and would like to receive some support, please contact us at Prosper Health Collective for further information on 6381 0071.

Sonya Curran