Definitions Of Workplace Bullying

1651 Words 7 Pages
Workplace Bullying
Abusive supervision and bullying are two of the biggest issues facing the workplace today. Literature struggles to define bullying because of its ambiguous and diverse nature (Bible, 2012; Olive & Cangemi, 2015). Different percentages of the population are shown by research (Bible, 2012; Magee et al., 2015; Olive & Cangemi, 2015; Samnani, 2013) to be affected or involved to some degree, possibly due to the varying definitions of the term “bullying.” Bible (2012) defines it as involving “emotional abuse characterized by hostile verbal and nonverbal behavior directed at a person such that the target’s sense of himself or herself as a competent person and worker is negatively affected” (p. 33). Shoss, Restubog, Eisenberger,
…show more content…
Olive and Cangemi (2015) point out that bullies often piggyback the accomplishments of coworkers and are often driven by jealousy. Bible (2012) posits that bullying consists of insults, teasing, public shaming, yelling, gossip, and much more. As if bullying wasn’t hard enough to distinguish already, there are actually several kinds of bullies based on personality type (Olive & Cangemi, 2015). “Delusional” describes the person who thinks he or she is an excellent leader, but in fact, they are not. They do not have the knowledge, skills, or abilities necessary to lead, so they take credit for the work done by others. “Paranoid” bullies are afraid of others, specifically, they do not want to be overlooked. These bullies will target others who seem to have more potential. Contrasting the previous types, “sociopathic” bullies actually have the ability to be successful leaders, but they tend to take things too far when it comes to reaching their goals. They will use others to accomplish tasks, but do not treat people well in the process. Finally, “narcissists” have admirable qualities about them, but they believe they are above everyone …show more content…
Some research has shown that witnesses are often afraid of being bullied themselves, therefore, they fear the consequences of helping the target; this fear frequently causes the witness to feel the same stressors as the victim (Olive & Cangemi, 2015). When facing a higher power distance (i.e., the distance in the hierarchy from the subordinate to the supervisor), employees may not be able to separate the bullying actions from normal delegation, therefore, the targets are less likely to oppose the bullying (Samnani, 2013).Samnani (2013) posits some individual differences that may determine whether an employee will speak out or not: individualism and collectivism. A collectivist target may not want others to know of the bullying because they want to maintain harmony in the group; they may also witness bullying and keep it to themselves for the same reason, or they may try to justify the actions by blaming work load (Samnani, 2013). An individualistic target will be less likely to keep the bullying to themselves; individualists are more concerned with the way they are perceived by their supervisors, therefore, they will not likely stand for someone else taking credit for their own work (Samnani, 2013).
How Are Organizations Affected?
Bullying can be costly to organizations in many ways, both monetarily and through loss of morale. One example of a cost of bullying

Related Documents