3 in 10 workers report feeling bullied at work

Bullying survey 2017

According to a CareerBuilder survey, bullying continues to be an issue in the workplace.

Playgrounds and high school hallways aren’t the only places where bullying is found today. In a recent CareerBuilder survey, roughly three in 10 workers (29 percent) reported feeling bullied at work. This rate was higher in LGBT workers (40 percent), younger workers ages 18-24 (39 percent) and women (32 percent).

Bullying takes many forms
What constitutes bullying? Seventy-two percent of bullied workers say they were bullied by one person, and 11 percent say it happened in a group setting. Twenty-six percent say they were bullied by someone younger, and 58 percent say they were bullied by someone older. Among the most common examples of bullying given by workers were:

- Falsely accused of mistakes you didn’t make (45 percent)

- Ignored - comments were dismissed or not acknowledged (42 percent)

- Constantly criticized by boss or co-workers (37 percent)

- Used different standards/policies for you than other workers (34 percent)

- You were gossiped about (36 percent)

- Belittling comments were made about your work during meetings (28 percent)

- Someone didn’t perform certain duties, which negatively impacted your work (29 percent)

- Yelled at by boss in front of other co-workers (26 percent)

- Purposely excluded from projects or meetings (20 percent)

Don’t Let Bullies Bring You Down

Michael Erwin, director of Corporate Communications for CareerBuilder and a member of the organization’s LGBTQA group, CareerBuilder Equal, shared the below tips for workers dealing with office bullies:

  • Take notes. Document interactions between the bully. Keep these notes in a private place, and use them if you need to show the bullying pattern to a third party, such as the HR department.
  • Ignore, but don’t be afraid to confront. At first, try to minimize time spent around the bully, and ignore any bullying behavior. Take things to email so you can track and keep a record of interactions with them, and try to have others around when talking to them face-to-face.
  • Confront them. But sometimes, enough is enough, and you need to confront them. Explain how the negative treatment makes you feel, and ask them to stop. Sometimes perpetrators are not aware of the effect their actions have. Fifty-three percent of workers confronted their bully, and 20 percent who did said the bullying stopped.
  • Don’t be afraid to bring in the experts. Seventy-two percent of workers do not report bullying to HR. Your HR team is trained in dealing with workplace conflict, and can step in to help you solve the issue.

Check out more tips on how to deal with an office bully and identify and deal with five types of problem co-workers.