Can Workplace Bullying Be Prevented?

Can Workplace Bullying Be Prevented?

Can Workplace Bullying Be Prevented?
Photo Credit: oligarh2 via Compfight cc

In the previous article I discussed what workplace bullying is, and gave an example of a behaviours that could be classified as workplace bullying.

With this piece I will go over a few things that your business can do to minimise the chances of one of your staff members falling prey to a workplace bully.

With workplace bullying being a high profile subject at the moment, it seems that every second day there is some major headline about it. Depending on who you talk to, Australian workplaces are either a breeding ground for workplace bullies, or a random occurrence.

Capitalising on that, there are some who claim that doing X, Y or Z will prevent workplace bullying from happening.

Unfortunately, the truth of the matter is that while you are employing humans who are able to think for themselves, bullying in the workplace may happen, though there are steps you can take to minimise your risk to it.

Policies And Procedures

One of the most important things that a business can and should do to minimise their risk to a workplace bullying claim is to have a set of adequate policy and procedure manuals.

These manuals should not only set out that workplace bullying is an unacceptable behaviour, they should also set out a process for reporting alleged bullying behaviour.

The policy would explain that workplace bullying isn’t acceptable, and relate to how the business would respond to workplace bullying complaints.

The procedure manual would outline the procedure that would be followed should a workplace bullying complaint be made.

This could include things like the form used to make a complaint, who the complaint should be directed to, and how to escalate the complaint if it isn’t responded to within a certain time frame.

Leadership MUST Come From The Top

Your business can have the best workplace bullying procedure and policy manuals ever seen, though if the desire to have a workplace free from bullying doesn’t come from the top, there is very little chance of it actually happening.

This means that the CEO or business owner MUST take a proactive approach to ensuring the business is free from bullying.

For example, there will be little comfort to a supervisor who feels they are being bullied by their manager, if this manager’s superiors aren’t willing to do their part to stop that behaviour.

Then there is the added possibility of the senior managers or C Level executives being held responsible for the behaviour of employees if appropriate steps aren’t taken to minimise bullying in the workplace.

IR Simplified have training packages and policies that can are easily customisable for your business, so why not contact them today to see how they can help you simplify your industrial relations challenges?

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