When individuals bully at work, the problem is not as severe as when the organization has a culture that supports bullying. The organization as a bystander can choose to be a defender, protect victims and create a cooperative atmosphere, or to be a major supporter of bullies and increase the problem. Unlike the kids who are bystanders at school, organizational bystanders suffer from the bullying directly through loss of productivity and money.
This chapter includes many tips to help the organization condemn, stop and prevent bullying. Each tip here can make a huge impact on someone’s life and has the potential to stop the bullying cycle – victims feeling powerless and bullying others to regain their power, causing their victims to bully others to regain power and so on.
When I was 15, I had a very special teacher who supervised our school’s student council. He was a very devoted teacher and we felt he really cared for us. One day, I asked him, “Reuben, why do you do this? Why do you work so hard to empower us?”
He said, “If I convince 5 of you to make a change and each of you convinces another 5 who will convince another 5 each, eventually, we will have a better world!”
I am spreading his words. If you are part of an organization, particularly in a leadership position, and you help condemn, stop and prevent bullying towards one person, you will make a difference in the lives of their partner, their children, their grand children, and their great-grand children for generations to come.
We need strong and courageous people to put a stop to this cycle. If we stop one bully and then one more bully, we can gradually change the world. I believe this with all my heart.
Read more about how to stop workplace bullying…