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FEATURE ARTICLE  

Feature Articles : The Workplace Mobbing Syndrome
 

The Workplace Mobbing Syndrome:
Response and Prevention in the Public Sector

By Linda Shallcross

 

FEATURE ARTICLES

Mobbing - Part 1

Mobbing - Part 2

Mobbing - Part 3

Mobbing: Sophisticated Bullying in the Workplace

A Page for Partners, Friends and Supporters of Targets

Corporations and Bullying

Bully at Work:
Interview with Tim Field

The Workplace Mobbing Syndrome

At The Mercy of the Mob

Mobbing: Bullying's Ugly Cousin

Mobbing - A Familiar Pattern

None To Command & Control

Asper/Canwest Temple of Hypocrisy

Workplace Violence

Psychology of Torture

Checklist of Mobbing Indicators

   

Paper presented at the Workplace Bullying: A Community Response Conference held in Brisbane on 16th and 17th October 2003. It is requested that permission to cite this unpublished paper be obtained from the author by emailing zacajak@uq.net.au

Introduction

I will be discussing the workplace mobbing syndrome and how it is addressed in the public sector. The interchangeable use of ‘bullying’ with the term ‘mobbing’ and other definitional complexities will be discussed within the framework of psychological violence. An overview of the phases and behaviours that constitute the mobbing syndrome; the identification of objective criteria that distinguishes ‘mobbing’ behaviour; the regulatory tools established in some countries; the nature of passive aggressive behaviours; and the use of powerful networks in targeting a person, will be highlighted.  I will also provide an overview of research that claims that there are personality types that make a person susceptible to become either a perpetrator or a target.  The practical implications of my research are to inform public sector management of the serious consequences of poor human resource management practices that often result in qualified and capable staff leaving or being ‘expelled’ from their positions because they display qualities such as enthusiasm, integrity, and commitment that challenge the status quo or dominant culture.  They are easy targets for passive aggressive and abusive behaviours, including constant criticism, faultfinding, gossip and slander, and false accusations.

Definition

‘Workplace mobbing’ is defined as ‘a malicious attempt to force a person out of the workplace through unjustified accusations, humiliation, general harassment, emotional abuse, and/or terror’ as in Davenport.et.al. (1999), p 40. The term ‘mobbing’ is preferred to other definitions of harassment to clearly identify the behaviour as abusive group behaviour, instead of, for example, the term ‘bullying’ that implies individual acts of aggression. The phenomenon of ‘mobbing’ behaviour in the workplace has been studied by a number of researchers commencing with Leymann in Sweden in the early 1990s.  Different terms are used to describe the ‘mobbing’ phenomenon, such as ‘emotional abuse’, ‘harassment’, ‘bullying’, ‘mistreatment’ and ‘victimisation’.  Leymann (1994) described ‘mobbing’ as ‘harassing’, ‘ganging up on someone’, or ‘psychologically terrorizing’ others at work. Another researcher describes it as a deliberate ‘campaign’ by co-workers to exclude, punish and humiliate a targeted worker in a ‘desperate urge to crush and eliminate’ them in the workplace (Westhues, 2002). The outcome of mobbing is the target's 'expulsion' from the workplace, causing psychological and physical injuries as well as financial distress (Davenport et al., 1999; Einarsen et al., 2003; Leymann & Gustaffson, 1996).  Some targets have committed suicide and the symptoms of those who have been ‘expelled’ are similar to those of post traumatic stress disorder.

Perceptions of ‘bullying’

 
   

A number of state governments have introduced policies to address the issue of workplace bullying. For example here in Queensland, the Government established a Workplace Bullying Task Force in 2002.  In its report, the Taskforce suggested policies and procedures for dealing with ‘bullying’ behaviours in the public sector. In addition, a Draft Advisory Standard for the Prevention of Workplace Harassment (2003) has been distributed for public comment before being finalised.  However, mention is not made of the ‘mobbing’ syndrome or that abusive and destructive behaviours can be perpetrated upwards towards managers.  The most widely held perception is that managers ‘bully’ and that the people they supervise are the ‘victims’. This stereotype is perpetuated in the media where emotive language is used to describe the ‘boss’ as ‘evil’, ‘crazy’, and as ‘inflictors of misery’ (Lewis, 2003). The language used to describe ‘bully bosses’, and the descriptions of their proposed punishment, suggests a culture where punitive, harsh, demonising, menacing, and abusive processes are condoned as a solution for dealing with the ‘bully’ (Einarsen et al., 2003; Lewis, 2000; McCarthy, 2003).

While some research has identified that the ‘bully boss’ model constitutes the majority of cases as identified in Bullying in the workplace (2002); Einarsen (1999); Mikkelsen & Einarsen (2001), Rayner (1999), M. Sheehan (2001), Sheehan, Barker, & Rayner (1999), Sheehan, McCarthy, & Kearns (1998), attention also needs to be given to the ‘mobbing syndrome’, and in particular ‘upwards’ mobbing, and how it is used to shift a person out of their employment because they have become the ‘target’ of the group.  While the syndrome is not generally recognised or understood in English speaking countries, it has not only been recognised, but has also been legislated against in some European and Scandinavian countries.

 
   

Psychological Violence

The International Labour Organisation (ILO) in its report, When Working Becomes Hazardous: punching, spitting, swearing, shooting: violence at work goes global (1998), identified violence as being a labour issue of increasing world wide concern (Chappell & Di Martino, 1998). It is particularly significant that the ILO has extended the definition of workplace violence to include not only physical acts of aggression but also passive or psychological acts.  The damage caused includes post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), premature death, suicide, and homicide.  Similarly, studies highlight the detrimental impact on family members and bystanders who witness the aggression and/or those who provide emotional support to those targeted. The literature addresses two major concepts of psychological violence at work, namely ‘mobbing’ and ‘bullying’.

Those who prefer the term ‘mobbing’ suggest that ‘bullying’ primarily refers to situations of physically aggressive acts of ‘individual harassment’ whereas ‘mobbing’ refers to situations of subtle and less direct ‘collective harassment’ (Davenport et al., 1999).  Another significant difference is that the ‘mobbing’ specific research tends to focus on organisational risk factors and the impact on the target, whereas the bulk of the ‘bullying’ specific research tends to focus on the personality and the dysfunctional behaviour of the ‘bully’.

The Mobbing Syndrome

Essentially, there are five phases of the ‘mobbing syndrome’ commencing with a ‘conflict’ (first phase), followed by ‘aggressive acts’ and ‘psychological assaults’ (second phase), after which management becomes involved to the detriment of the target (third phase), the target is ‘branded as difficult’ or ‘mentally ill’ (fourth phase), and the final and fifth phase is termed the ‘expulsion’ where the target is forced to leave their position (Leymann & Gustaffson, 1996).   In addition, mobbing is described according to degrees, using the analogy of the degrees of damage caused by burns to the body, that is first, second and third degree ‘mobbing’ (Davenport et al.).

While many researchers have fused the terms ‘mobbing’ and ‘bullying’ to mean the same phenomenon, the social construction of the term ‘bullying’ does not necessarily include ‘mobbing’. ‘Bullying’ is generally understood to refer to aggressive managers who ‘bully’ the staff they supervise often targeting an individual in a direct and obvious way. By contrast,  ‘mobbing’ refers to covert collective behaviours of ‘ganging up’ and targeting co-workers and managers as well as subordinates using passive aggressive behaviours with malicious intent to cause harm (Davenport et al., 1999; Einarsen et al., 2003; Lewis et al., 2002).

The urgent need for objective criteria to identify workplace bullying is a key theme in the research because information for studies depends on the self-reports of targets or ‘self attribution’. While a worker may perceive that they have been ‘bullied’, it is essential that there are some common understandings or objective criteria by which the alleged behaviour can be measured. Otherwise, the conflicts that occur as part of normal human interaction at work may be interpreted incorrectly as ‘bullying’ behaviours (Einarsen et al., 2003; Lewis, 2000, 2003).  Zapf & Einarsen (2003) have suggested that some workers have started to exploit the benefits of ‘victim’ status by claiming they have been ‘bullied’ to achieve personal goals. Claiming victim status can benefit a ‘bully’ as ‘victims’ are perceived as ‘fair and innocent’, to be protected from the bullies who are demonised as ‘unfair and guilty’ (Zapf & Einarsen, 2003). However, the literature on workplace mobbing is more specific and provides a number of objective criteria by which it’s occurrence can be measured.

Within this framework, there are specific passive aggressive behaviours that constitute ‘mobbing’, some of which are also common to those exhibited in ‘bullying’. The behaviours are instigated with the intention to deliberately ‘break people’s spirit’ (Heine, 1995) and ‘to kill life or liveliness’ (Davenport et al., 1999) and following is a list of those commonly identified in the research.

Regulatory responses

 
   

Many European and Scandinavian countries, including France, Germany, Italy, Sweden, Spain, The Netherlands, and Norway, have introduced a range of regulatory responses to deal with psychological aggression (Di Martino et al., 2003).   Most recently, Belgium and France introduced legislation against moral harassment (bullying) at work covering a wide range of situations of psychological aggression including verbal abuse, bullying, mobbing, and sexual harassment. The French legislation, despite its implementation shortcomings (Bukspan, 2002), makes ‘moral harassment’ a criminal offence with penalties of up to one-year imprisonment and fines of 15,000 Euro dollars (Di Martino et al., 2003).  In Finland, a new Occupational Safety and Health Act was approved by Parliament in June 2000 covering both physical and psychological violence, including threats of violence, harassment, sexual harassment, and bullying. Denmark introduced guidelines in March 2002 requesting that risks of ‘mental health deterioration’ due to bullying and harassment be taken into account in assessing work performance and identifying employers as responsible for prevention under local collective bargaining agreements (Di Martino et al., 2003).

The Netherlands also has legislation covering sexual harassment, mobbing, bullying, racism and psychological aggression (Di Martino et al., 2003).   Italy has introduced legislation that establishes regionally based ‘anti-mobbing’ units, and Spain has established new case law identifying psychological violence as a work injury.  Sweden was the first country to introduce legislation in 1994 specifically targeting passive aggression at work and designating employers as responsible for prevention (Davenport et al., 1999; Di Martino et al., 2003). In Germany, a number of workplaces identify mobbing as a violation of their collective work agreements. Luxembourg has a similar system of collective workplace agreements and for the first time in April 2001, moral and/or psychological harassment was included.

In the United Kingdom, Ireland, and Australia, the trend has been to address ‘bullying’ and psychological violence under existing legislation on industrial relations and workplace safety (Di Martino et al., 2003). However, in the United States, workplace bullying is not yet recognised by the legal system and claims under statutory schemes are said to be inadequate and seldom successful despite the legal doctrine of Intentional Infliction of Emotional Distress (IIED) as outlined in Davenport et al. (1999).

Power

Psychological violence has most often been recognised in the ‘bullying’ literature as occurring where there is a power imbalance and where ‘position’ power is abused mostly by a manager towards the staff they supervise. However, there are other forms of power that can be gained through length of experience in a workplace or through access to influential networks. My research highlights the effectiveness of ‘informal’ power in situations of psychological violence resulting in workplace mobbing.
Key researchers on the ‘mobbing’ syndrome actively oppose the argument that ‘bullies’ and ‘victims’ display personality traits that give them a predisposition to bully or to be bullied, claiming that targets can simply be in the wrong place at the wrong time (Davenport et al., 1999; Einarsen et al., 2003; Leymann & Gustaffson, 1996; Zapf, 1999). However, this is a controversial issue, as many claim there are personality traits or types that predispose individuals towards becoming either a target or a perpetrator of ‘mobbing’ and/or ‘bullying’. This approach is described by McCarthy (2000) as ‘bully bashing’ and ‘victim blame’. This focus on individual personality characteristics is said to provide an indication as to those who are likely to be perpetrators and targets in the workplace.

Personality Types

Some studies suggest that targets exhibit personality traits such as being less independent and extroverted, less stable, and more conscientious than non-victims. This is provided as a possible reason as to what it is about the target that attracts psychological aggression (Zapf & Einarsen, 2003). Perpetrators on the other hand are described as authoritarian, manipulative, lacking people skills, insensitive, evil, sadists and psychopaths as described by McCarthy (2000). In the current climate where governments are keen to deal with the issue, it has become the case that inflated accusations of ‘bullying’ can result in the immediate assumed guilt of the alleged perpetrator, along with public humiliation in the media, particularly if they are in a position of power (Einarsen et al., 2003; Lewis, 2000; McCarthy, 2000, 2003; Zapf & Einarsen, 2003).

Gender

Some research findings report that there is a low occurrence of bullying in organizations where there are equal numbers of men and women (O'Moore et al., 2003).  However, others highlight its occurrence in either male or female dominated work environments. For example, in male dominated ‘macho’ cultures such as defence organizations and the fire service, targets are subjected to constant threats and the intimidating use of discipline as well as bullying group socialization processes (Archer, 1999; Porteous, 2002). Likewise, men in male dominated occupational areas, such as the construction industry, report significantly higher levels of physical and verbal aggression (Hubert & Veldhoven, 2001), rather than the passive aggressive types of behaviours that are reported in women dominated occupations (Hockley, 2002).  In addition, others have identified men as more likely to be the perpetrators of ‘bullying’ and women most likely those targeted (Chappell & Di Martino, 2001; Hoel et al., 2001; Namie & Namie, 1999).

However, women have been identified as displaying passive aggressive behaviours in the workplace, particularly towards other women, using less direct behaviours such as psychological aggression, emotional abuse, and a range of other passive aggressive strategies with malicious intent to cause harm to those targeted (Hockley, 2002; Namie, 2000). These behaviours have been identified in the female dominated work sectors of health, education, social welfare, and public administration (Chappell & Di Martino, 2001; Einarsen, Matthiesen, & Skogstad, 1998; Hockley, 2002; Hubert & Veldhoven, 2001; Keashly & Jagatic, 2003; Thomson, 2002; Westhues, 2002).  These different types of behaviours are most likely due to culturally learned and embedded gendered responses in dealing with conflict (Hodgetts, 1993; Lee, Pillutla, & Law, 2000; Leymann & Gustaffson, 1996).  For example, behaviour described as ‘relational aggression’, where the ‘bully’ damages the ‘victim’s’ friendship networks through social manipulation such as spreading rumours is directly linked to female gender in adolescents (Cowie et al., 2000), while ‘bullying’ has been socially constructed as male type behaviour.

Girl bullying is more indirect and often involves threats of social exclusion from an important circle of friends as identified in Logue (2001). This behaviour is almost identical to the ‘workplace mobbing syndrome’ described by Davenport et al. (1999). The ‘bullying’ specific literature is significantly weighted towards describing men as perpetrators and women as ‘victims’ (Einarsen, 2002).  However, there are others who suggest that men and women are equally likely to ‘bully’ (Bullying in the workplace, 2002; Namie, 2000).  To add to the ambiguity, other researchers have identified that the lowest level of ‘bullying’ occurs in those organizations where mostly men are employed, and that it is highest in those workplaces where the majority of women are employed (O'Moore et al., 2003).  I have come to the view that this is primarily a definitional ambiguity and a lack of recognition of the gendered nature of responses for dealing with conflict.  These apparent contradictions are clarified when behaviours identified as bullying in the literature are separated out into distinctive ‘mobbing’ and ‘bullying’ categories. A stereotype in relation to gendered responses to conflict then appears, ie women tend to use passive aggressive behaviours, as identified in the workplace mobbing specific literature, while men tend to display aggressive behaviours, as identified in workplace bullying specific literature. This then provides a reason for the apparent confusion about the relevance of gender in the research where the two terms are used interchangeably.

In English speaking countries with traditionally hierarchical bureaucratic structures, ‘bullying’ has been socially constructed as male type behaviour whereas ‘mobbing’ appears to be a product of flatter administrative structures in those European and Scandinavian countries where there is more of a sense of industrial democracy. It is in these countries, and in those sectors where women are in the majority that the mobbing syndrome has been found to occur.  This is not intended to mean that only men bully or that only women use passive aggressive mobbing behaviours as it is clear in the research that both men and women can be either perpetrators or targets. It is also not intended to mean that bullying only occurs in male dominated bureaucratic structures or that mobbing only occurs in women dominated flatter structures.

However, it is important not to be dismissive of gender differences in discussions on workplace conflict, including bullying and mobbing. It is highly likely that responses to conflict in the workplace are the result of learned responses where typical male type and female type responses are culturally embedded. It is a common misperception that ‘equality for women and men’ means that both genders are exactly the same and should therefore be treated the same and where gender difference is dismissed as irrelevant. This denies both men and women the opportunity to develop their strengths and to recognize their weaknesses. Rather, equality is more than a ‘numbers game’ where statistics are provided as evidence that there are equal numbers of men and women in the workplace.  It also means recognizing and valuing the differences that each gender contributes including the strengths of male type and female type behaviours as well as the weaknesses.

Difference and diversity

In addition to gender, other personal characteristics such as race, culture, impairment, age, marital status, and sexual orientation, are high risk factors for becoming a target of ‘mobbing’ in work environments where there is a dominant group.  Disturbingly, one study (Archer, 1999) found that those who were different because of their gender or race were particularly targeted to ‘ensure the continuation of the white male culture’.  Researchers on workplace diversity issues, for example cited in Stephenson & Lewin (1996), suggest that there is a ‘human preference for the familiar’ reflected in expressions such as ‘like seeking like’ and ‘birds of a feather flock together’.  They argue that the ‘dark’ side of diversity is that there is a ‘fundamental fear’ of the ‘difference of others’.  Diversity, or difference, is not likely to be valued in workplace cultures where there is a sense of ‘You don’t look like me, you don’t dress like me and you don’t think like me; therefore I don’t want to know or understand you’.

Employees who are in the minority due to their inherent characteristics are especially vulnerable to bullying and mobbing behaviours as recognized in human rights and anti-discrimination legislation in many countries, including Australia, the United Kingdom, Ireland, and the United States. Those who are different to the dominant group including those with differing political, religious, and trade union beliefs, or those displaying behaviours that threaten the dominant work group, for example being ‘conscientious’ or ‘enthusiastic’, are also more likely to be targeted.

While efforts have been made, for example with the introduction of workforce diversity and equal employment opportunity programs, along with the implementation of the merit principle in recruitment, and the use of anti discrimination legislation, nevertheless, the research indicates that it is these same groups of people that are likely to be targeted for abuse once they gain access to employment as outlined in Archer (1999), Bernstein & Arndt, (2001), Bullying in the workplace (2002), Bullying is a Safe Work Issue (2003) and Murdoch & Taylor (2002).  However, that is not to suggest that those who identify with these target groups are all ‘fair and innocent’ as they are equally capable of perpetrating mobbing or bullying behaviours as well, as noted in Namie (2000).

The concept of ‘valuing difference’, not only because a person is visibly different due to gender, race, or impairment, but because they may have a different perspective, a different way of working, or come from a different social class is important to understanding why ‘mobbing’ occurs.  If it is assumed that difference and diversity are principles to be valued in the workplace, as identified in the Karpin report (1995), then it becomes evident that there is an underlying tension between agendas in the public sector.  While ‘valuing diversity’ is promoted on one hand, conformity in relation to behaviour, skills, communication, and the way work is performed is required on the other.  These tensions must be realised and dealt with if diversity and difference is truly valued.

Research findings

All participants, except one, had experienced systematic collusion where groups of employees had ‘ganged up’ on them deliberately and with malicious intent to cause them harm.  These passive aggressive group behaviours, included slander, gossip, constant criticism, psychological abuse, and isolation and marginalisation, and had been endured for at least twelve months before they reached the extent that they were no longer able to go to work. Most of the targets experienced the ongoing behaviours for at least two years, and some for three years and longer and most were never able to return to their positions.  Most of the participants reported that they had been either mobbed upwards or horizontally or both while others experienced the more commonly recognised ‘bullying’ displayed by their managers. The participants claimed that the perpetrators were inexperienced managers promoted beyond their experience and ability and without the benefit of a merit process.  The perpetrators were said to be insecure and focussed on furthering their career ambitions at any expense.  The staff who were targeted were exceptional performers and they each recognised, in hindsight, that their skills, abilities, integrity, and enthusiasm helped set them up to be targeted by those who were challenged by these attributes.

Workplace culture

Aspects of workplace culture, such as the reactive political context, lack of accountability, scapegoating of managers, lack of equity and merit in recruitment and selection processes, casualisation of staff, minimal staffing levels, high competition for jobs, lack of sufficient resources, turning a ‘blind eye’ to petty theft, and sexual orientation were identified by most of the participants as key factors in their experience of workplace abuse.  The culture is one of ongoing passive abuse where staff who were different to the dominant culture, because of race, culture, impairment, sexual orientation, or because they had different ways of working were not accepted or valued, and they were consequently marginalised, ostracised and in most cases ‘expelled’ from their positions.

The study revealed that mobbing behaviour is a symptom of a destructive and toxic workplace culture rather than because there is a particular ‘perpetrator’ or ‘target’ personality type. The culture of the workplace, including historical factors, accountability requirements, management practices, career agendas, the nature of influence and power, politics, communication processes, high staff turnover, cover ups, ad hoc appointment processes, family life, and different values arising from different life experience, race, culture and/or physical impairment were identified as fundamental to understanding the nature of ‘mobbing’ behaviour in the dominant public service culture that, albeit unwittingly, condones these behaviours.

However, the mobbing behaviours were not only a symptom of dysfunctional workplace culture but also a result of the dominant group ‘outing’ or ‘othering’ those who were not accepted.  All of those interviewed for this case study recognised that they either did not share the culture of the dominant group or they were not prepared to join in with what they perceived as destructive and unproductive behaviour. This resulted in them being deliberately targeted for ‘expulsion’ from their positions.

The literature highlights that cooperative, enthusiastic staff with notable achievements, and a high level of competence seem to be targeted and this was confirmed through this study where all of those interviewed for this research said they were enthusiastic, they were highly competent, and had personal integrity.  However, despite these attributes, they claimed that their advice was resented, their different experiences were not valued, and instead they appeared to be threatening to other staff, and finally that their roles were devalued as not being of much importance.

Implications and Recommendations

Despite efforts to improve the culture, such as workforce diversity, equal employment opportunity, and family friendly policies, and more recently the introduction of workplace bullying policies, this research highlights that practice does not match the public sector policy expectations. In this study, workplace mobbing was attributed to a toxic and dysfunctional workplace culture where staff believed they were not valued or respected, where people were appointed without a merit process, and where there was a culture of blame and scapegoating.  People who did not conform to the values of the dominant culture were targeted for psychological abuse and eliminated. This problem is not unique to the public sector and in many ways reflects the global violence of the times in which we live.

While this area of my research is still being constructed I can offer some comments based on considerations so far. One option is to simply re-invent the workforce diversity, equal employment opportunity, and work and family programs of the past.  However, after nearly twenty years these programs have not been sufficient to introduce the significant level of organisational cultural change required if workplace mobbing and passive aggressive violence is to be prevented.  Professional development programs and constructive incentives for staff are also required if change is to be achieved.  However, the instability of public sector culture, where there is a high level of staff turnover, ongoing departmental restructuring and job insecurity, appear to be debilitating in terms of achieving cultural change.  While ongoing efforts are made to improve the culture, strategies are also required to encourage prevention of ‘workplace mobbing’ as well as the development of fair and just processes for dealing with complaints.  A commitment to not only ‘value’ diversity but to rejoice in diversity, along with a culture approaching gender equity and respect for all workers whatever their impairment, their culture, religion, politics, sexual orientation or marital status, is essential to improve workplace culture and thereby assist with the reduction of conflict and mobbing behaviours. A renewal of commitment to policies, and more importantly to practices that ensure merit and equity in selection processes, and justice and fairness in employment conditions, are necessary if conflict and mobbing behaviours are to be addressed in the workplace.

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O'Moore, M., Lynch, J., Nic Daeid, N., & Cahill, K. (2002). The effects of bullying behaviour in the workplace: the use of research data bases and victim impact statements in the legal process. Bullying and Harassment at Work, Proceedings of the 2002 International Conference, London, UK, 23-24 September.
 
Porteous, J. (2002). Preventing and managing bullying in the Australian defence organisation. Bullying and Harassment at Work, Proceedings of the 2002 International Conference, London, UK, 23-24 September.
 
Rayner, C. (1999). From research to implementation: finding leverage for prevention. International Journal of Manpower, Vol.20, Nos.1-2, pp.28-39.
 
Sheehan, M. (2001). When the mask slips: Case studies in organisational restructuring, in P. McCarthy, Rylance, J., Bennett, R., & Zimmerman, H. (Ed.), Bullying: From Backyard to Boardroom. Sydney: Federation Press.
 
Sheehan, M., Barker, M., & Rayner, C. (1999). Applying strategies for dealing with workplace bullying. International Journal of Manpower, Vol.20, Nos. 1-2, pp 50-56.
 
Sheehan, M., McCarthy, P., & Kearns, D. (1998). Managerial styles during organisational restructuring: issues for health and safety practitioners, The Journal of Occupational Health and Safety - Australia and New Zealand, Vol. 14, No.6, pp.31-37.
 
Stephenson, K., & Lewin, D. (1996). Managing workforce diversity: macro and micro level HR implications of network analysis. International Journal of Manpower, Vol.17, Nos. 4-5, pp.168-197.
 
Thomson, C. (2002). Workplace bullying and new public management approaches. Paper presented at the International Workplace Bullying Conference: "Skills for survival, solutions and strategies", 20-22 February, 2002, Adelaide.
 
Westhues, K. (2002). At the mercy of the MOB. OH & S Canada, Vol.18, No.8, p.30.
 
When working becomes hazardous: punching, spitting, swearing, shooting: violence at work goes global. (1998). Geneva: International Labour Organisation.
 
Zapf, D. (1999). Organisational, work group related and personal causes of mobbing/bullying at work. International Journal of Manpower, Vol. 20, Nos. 1-2, pp.70-85.
 
Zapf, D., & Einarsen, S. (2003). Individual antecedents of bullying: victims and perpetrators, in S. Einarsen, H. Hoel, D. Zapf & C.L Cooper (Eds.) Bullying and Emotional Abuse in the Workplace: International Perspectives in Research and Practice, Taylor & Francis Books Ltd, London.

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The glory of great men should always be measured
by the means they have used to acquire it.

~ Francois de La Rochefoucauld

 
 

If you let a bully come in your front yard, he'll be on your porch the next day and the day after that he'll rape your wife in your own bed."

~ Lyndon Baines Johnson, 36th US President

 
 
Support Group

Calgary, AB

For more information about joining our workplace bullying support group in Calgary please
click here to
email Anton.

 
Interview with a Target of
Workplace Bullying

by John Peel
on Home Truths,
BBC Radio 4
(mp3)

Courtesy BullyEQ
 
 

WEBQuotes


Calgary Herald
"...grossly unacceptable employer behaviour."
> AFL
"There was a lot of bullying in the newsroom and it was a gift to be able to stand up and say we are prepared to do something about it."
> UNB

Canwest Global
"The CanWest corporation is showing the ugly and intolerant face of modern media," ... "While openly interfering in editorial content it cravenly punishes those journalists who have the courage to protest."
> IFJ
"Many journalists left CanWest, deciding to quit or take disability leave after the frigid mood of their newsrooms made them ill."
> Canwest Watch

Imperial Parking
"Timothy Lloyd decided he had had enough of "going in to war every day." ... I was very unhappy in my work -- burned out, stressed out ... There were constant threats of dismissal, constant invading of my personal space, and use of profanity that was personally directed at me."
> HealthSmith

Annuity Research & Marketing Service Ltd.
"Every employer, said Justice Dambrot, owes a contractual duty to its employees to “treat them fairly, with civility, decency, respect, and dignity.” By failing to protect Ms. Stamos from Mr. Hammami’s harassment, the court concluded that the employer had breached this contractual duty."
> Labor Relations Consultants


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