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Workplace Bullies…a growing problem

Date: 05/16/2007 | Category: Business | Author: Diana Heeb Bivona

Workplace bullies are becoming a growing problem.  Not just for the colleagues that have to work with them, but for employers as well.  Workplace bullies can cost employers by demeaning and de-energizing employees leading to drops in overall productivity, employee absenteeism, increased rates of employee disability and stress-related illnesses and even lost customers.

According to a recently released Employment Law survey, approximately 45% of U.S. workers have had to put up with a workplace bully.  This is nearly double the number of workers reporting mistreatment by someone in the workplace in 2000. 

One company was actually able to put their own price tag on how much a bully cost them.  A star salesperson, who was also a major bully/jerk, cost them an additional $160,000 per year just in the number of assistants he’d burned through, overtime costs, legal costs, anager management training, etc. 

The bottom line for employers is that this type of individual should and can not be tolerated.  Address the behavior immediately and no “free passes”.  Repeat offenders can’t be ignored.  Employers need to make it clear that either these bullies change their behavior or look for employment elsewhere.   

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