Comments: Bullies At Work

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Nancy , Charleston WV   01/29/14
I have been working in an intolerable hostile work environment for almost six years! Literally $thousands has been spent on doctors and therapy. I have tried to ignore this, but it continues. Unfortunately, the bullies are the CEOs, They answer to no one and have ultimate power. After 31 years of service, my career and reputation has been ruined and I am being forced into retirement. Thank God it will soon be over.

Randy , Kent   12/08/13
Bullies at Work
I've been working with this for several years and my state does not currently have any laws prohibiting it. My other co-workers and supervisor are all aware but do nothing to stop it, some of them even find it humorous. I do not. I hope for positive outcomes for everyone that is dealing with this issue. It has taken it's toll on my health.

Matilda    11/14/13
Bullying is primitive behavior. It will crop up anywhere people are forced together to form a group, for whatever purpose, be it school, a workplace, a family. Depending on how evolved a person is, and how their brains are hard-wired, as well as the way they were raised all play a part in whether he/she will be bullies or bullied. The best way to avert bullying in an office is to employ someone who is well aware of bully tactics and is skilled in resolving these conflicts. Any complaint of bullying should result in surveillance of the persons involved. This must be done on a long-term basis and when least expected. Observations should be brought to authorized persons within the company for an appraisal, and parties concerned should then be allowed to air grievances and expectations. Once bullying is brought to light and opinions exposed, bullying is robbed of its covert power. Recommendations are made, and if there is any reoccurrence, it should be exposed again at once and consequences imposed.

Elizabeth , Kent   11/13/13
I am going through something very similar, but it has been going on for a few months now and a couple of people were involved. I am at the end of my rope. I wish you the best. This is like a nightmare I could have never imagined.

Tam , Weare NH   10/19/13
Bullying at home
What do you do, when after 3 days of allowing a family a place to stay, you have differences and now they are threatening you in your own home in front of your family. Are there any laws to protect me since my heart was trying to help this family now has turned into a volcano about to erupt effecting 4 childen, 6,6, 7 and 9. Thanks

Chris , Manchester   10/15/13
how do you protect the wrongly accused?
I'm presently going through an horrendous time at work; I can't sleep, have no appetite, feel depressed and constantly on edge and wanting to cry. Why? Because a member of staff has decided to accuse me of bullying. And because they are perceived as the victim I am powerless and left vulnerable.I have always supported this member of staff. I have always spoken highly of him and promoted his ability at every given opportunity. I really liked him and enjoyed working with him until I received a phone call 2 weeks ago. In this phone call he verbally attacked my way of working and questioned my knowledge and thereby my ability to do my job. Although I have all the recognized qualifications, above his, I didn't rise to his hostility and demeaning manner because I was conscious of having to work with hime in the future. I even went to great pains to end the conversation on a friendly note. I was so shaken after the call that I couldn't move and just wanted to cry. I went back to my desk and kept checking my phone in the hope that he would text or ring to say sorry. Had he done this I would have just put it down to a bad day. Instead, I was informed a week later that he was taking a bullying case against me saying that the way I spoke to him was undermining, had upset him and had made him question his abilitry to do his job. His teram leader came to our office to hear my side of the conversation. I was so traumatised by the whole thing I couldn't speak for crying. She has informed my team leader that she will ask this member of staff if he would consider mediation. I have agreed to this but to me this is the lesser of 2 evils. I clearly don't want the trauma of having to prove myself through a formal grievance as the unfairness of the process so far has left me feeling completely disempowered, vulnerable and sick but the fact that he is percieved as the victim in all this leaves the power in his hands and leaves me dangling while waiting on his decision.There is absolutely no foundation to his accusation and the fact that it lierally came out of the blue makes it all the more traumatising. I think he knows what he is doing. He knows there is not a lot I can do about the clear bullying that is taking place. He is using the very bullying policy, which is meant to protect people from people like him, to do it. The whole thing has had a devistating impact on my physiological wellbeing to the point that I've stopped functioning and can't stop thinking about it. And now I'm expected to site at a table with him and listen to him justify his accusations and then walk away. Where do I go for my justice?

John  , Pune     09/27/13
These are few pointers
Bullies don't bully assertive people. When you stand up to them, they cannot and will eventually give upon you. During the initial stages at the Workplace, use your Wisdom to know who the bully is and just apply the porcupine strategy and I overcame not one or two but a group of bullies at workplace.

Jas , Los Angeles ca   09/18/13
Bullies at work
This is the reason we have labor laws to protect people.

Lucrezia , Mississauga On     04/13/13
I joined the company in 2009, and then was promoted to manage the support staff a year & half later. My problem person is currently working in a team environment (a/r), but I believe she is intimidating the team lead and not pulling her weight. To make matters worse she can have a tendency to be aggressive and bully others. I have had one occasion when I had to suspend her for the day without pay for insubordination. I would like to move her out of this department, and in one that she will be working alone. My boss however feels that the position she is currently in is the only one suitable for her. In a sense, we have to accommodate her behavior. I have proposed that perhaps she can be transferred to another department, for example, reception where she will be working on her own, not have to work on deadlines and not affect the accounts receivable dept. My hope is that the rest of the staff will be somewhat isolated from her behavior. Being assigned as receptionist she will have no choice but to learn to be respectful to people and stop this type of behavior. Is there any way I can convince my boss of this?

carol  , Kingman az     04/08/13
employer being very hostile
I work in the hotel industry,I have been with this same employer for almost 11 years ,i have seen and heard how he has talked very violint, to other now he has started with me.He has done this to me about three times and it gets worse every time.Cussing,yelling,slamming his fist on the counter, this last time it has sent me to the hospital with a possible heart attack.Now that I am out of the hospital,I am afraid to go any where in town, I am afraid of running into him. I feel very tromotized.

Roger Vivier Outlet , Putian     03/25/13
Roger Vivier Outlet
Great and nice post thank you.

Michael Mynoriti, Newark NJ   03/22/13
Welcome to their world...
I empathize with everyone of you who have borne the brunt of hate, bullying, intimidation, harassment, retaliation, discrimination, etc. It is hurtful and should not be tolerated. However, I could not fail but notice that a good number of commentators in this blog hold or held lofty corporate positions. I was simply wondering whether at anytime prior to your work issues you had an opportunity to implement and guarantee an equal opportunity environment at your various places of employment; listened to complaints of discrimination; instituted an adequate grievance procedure for "ALL" employees; ensured that employment decisions are non-discriminatory; ensured that no employees felt isolated and unwanted for any reason whatsoever? I point these out because I have taken time to observe what is termed "corporate America" and my stomach churns in disgust at the silence by 'bosses' like you in corporate America in the face of an overwhelming and rabid marginalization and discrimination of 'good' African-American employees at their various jobs - be they doctors, directors, etc, simply based on their skin color. They are often passed over for promotions, even though they are assigned the task of teaching their very next bosses and they are often employed just to fill some quotas. Like us, every one else has a right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. We daily at our various privileged positions set glass ceilings for people whom we believe are different from us and we pass this culture to the next generation with no modicum of humanity. We learn from our corporate lawyers how to do this without attracting the attention of man or law. As one of the commentators, oh well... "I still get my paycheck." Congratulations! I can assure you that I hear heart-wrenching and suicidal cries of families destroyed on account of man-made - or do I say boss-made - stress at the work-place. African-American physicians who received outstanding evaluations from peers for several years but passed over for partnership in an all-white medical practices for some inexplicable "concerns"; lawyers in perpetual employment as associates, even though their work product had propelled their departments and firms to the top of the "Superlawyers" chart; African-American Vice-presidents in Wall Street financial institutions who were given sub-standard evaluations just before the pink-slips were handed out, etc. I can go on forever with examples of this cruel reality. The subjects of these acts are also human beings with blood, tears and pain coursing through their bodies. How I wish we can all look around our desks and start the healing there. I am sure that this may be the wrong forum to solemnize and vent, however, I just could not resist an opportunity to put in a word for those who are often not in a position to do so themselves. I wish you all the best of luck and hope that the words that my dad belched out - "man's inhumanity to man" - when confronted with these an act of unjustifiable cruelty as listed above will lose its appeal with the generations to come.

mary , austin tx   02/26/13
8 months of bullying
I've filed discrimination charges and subsequently retaliation charges with the EEOC. Even that did not stop the problem. Leave denial, substandard evaluations, isolation, made up complaints. But I still get my paycheck... For now! Never let them see you sweat! Smile when they think you should be down! Keep them off guard and DOCUMENT each and every day!

lupe , Corpus Christi tx     12/08/12
i feel just like you do im going through the same thing with my boss he had left and came back to work here i work at a nursing home ive been here over 8 years hes still the same like he was before if not worse im looking for another job also because i cant stand it just makes me sick and i cant go above him because they wont do nothing about it.always putting me down in front of other co-workers and not feel bad about it at all.

Harmony , Victoria   10/28/12
Please, please PLEASE know that you are not alone!!! I have been enduring bullying and mobbing for 2 months, I went to my employer when it first started and told him about it, he did nothing. I thought that I was going insane, developed an ulcer and started vomiting blood before having to go to work. I felt that I was all alone with dealing with the situation because of the negligence of my employer to do anything about it. I doubted myself as a manager and every other decision I had made in my life, I became a recluse, not wanting to leave my house. I also had an exemplary work history of five years as the manager of this hospital. Never a complaint from those that I managed, instead nothing but accolades regarding how I dealt fairly with the staff, and they felt supported and that I was finally addressing issues and problems in the workplace. And because one person decided to take issue with me, my reputation was destroyed. And my employer actually drank up her lies like Kool Aid. Instead of investigating the problem, he chastised me for doing my job of making sure others did their job. I ended up having to file a case with WorkSafe, because I knew that if I went to work I would end up dead. I never thought about suicide, but I knew that the situation would drive my health into the crapper, and it would kill me. Please look into whatever organization you have to protect workers in your state! There is help out there!!!You are not alone!!!

chris cravens, Tulsa ok     10/21/12
bullied and managed out
After working for the same company for 9 years, I had 7 evaluations that were excellent. Then my Boss was put in charge of an employee from another department. This employee disliked me very strongly but also befriended my Boss. The Open-door Policy that once existed for all of us became one that worked only for my Boss's "favorites". As a result I have been verbally counseled twice and received a Poor Evaluation from my Boss as a result of this new "friend" of hers helping her with it. My work ethics and performance has always been the same. So either I really have "sucked" at this Job for the past 9 years and they're just now finding this out..or somebody wants to manage me out. Meanwhile I am a 3 headed monster. i am trying to improve my level of performance at this Job...I am trying to find another Job...and I am also making plans to assist my family in the likely event that I commit Suicide. I am sick, sad, depressed, jealous,irritable and stripped of any self-confidence that I have ever had. I wish it would just end. When I think of my family, I no longer include myself in the future...I only think of my life as if it were in the past. I feel like it is all over for me and too late to fix anything.

Mary , Middle river Md   08/11/12
Thank you so much , I just read your explanation of ADULT BULLING , and it reassured me that this is really an issue that needs to be addressed. I still am amazed that this has happened to me. I'm 63 yrs old & cannot believe that events like this really happen, I guess it's always been an issue just never been brought to attention before in this manner. Again, thank you!

Kate , Perth   04/01/12
bullying in the workplace
I made a mistake with my boss she publicly humiliated me two or three times im really shy and have low self esteem she knew this my self esteem really really fell she told everyone in the shop what i did too embarrass me i think i findly found the courage to stand up to her and then i left I am really proud of myself

Bernette , Melbourne   12/12/11
Hi understand how you feel and what you are saying. I'm in Melbourne Australia and have worked in HR for 20 years. I have been bullied twice by CEO's and those who have the most to gain in terms of bonuses and power. It's a terrible thing and I agree they seem to be getting away with it and it is seen by companies as "getting results". I thought about suicide like most who have been in this situation , but didn't as I knew my family would suffer and I am glad now that I didn't. I was terminated by the two bullies , because I complained that they were bullying me and others. I now have no job and no income while they are being rewarded, as you say, enjoying benefits. I now have to take them to court which is equally horrible and stressful, these people use company money and resources to continue their bullying. Its a symptom of the societies we live in were greed, status and entitlement when fuelled by organisations deep pockets, perpetuates and encourages this behaviour. Bullying makes us feel isolated and alone, we are not alone, there are millions of us all around the world facing this problem. I know it must be difficult with no job and no home God help you indeed.

carolyn , wixom mi   12/12/11
I have been going through this and had to go on medical leave and was terminated 2 days after my dr put me on long term. Meds were increased higher and higher, more types, until I can't even work or think about trusting anyone. I cry everyday over this as I have lost my home, insurance, vehicles, most of my belonging had to be left becuase my storage was only so big. Yet they have thier jobs and enjoying thier homes. This bullying has to be stopped ALL OVER the world not just certain states and I feel sorry for these kids going through it - it used to be where kids eventually beat the bully up, now we the ones being bullied are committing suicide to stop the pain and embarrassment. GOD help us all!

, washington dc   09/07/11
bullied at work continues
Been dealing with the work place bully for over a year now and she continues to bully me. I am so tired of it. It makes me sick to my stomach and the HR director does nothing b/c she is friends with the bully. the HR director's position requires a master's degree, but she has never been to college. now i see why she allows the bullying to go on. i am seeing a therapist through EAP. My therapist is the only one who realizes that this really is going on and is familiar with how employers try to down play it so they are not sued. I don't know how much longer I can go on. I can't quit b/c then I'll be on the streets. I need the paycheck. I could never treat anyone bad like that when they don't deserve it. I feel so sad, hopeless and lonely. I am getting depressed!

Bill , Scottsdale CA   04/12/11
Bullying at Work
Thank you for sharing your situation. There are many people in similar situations and by sharing your story it helps others feel less alone. Avoid becoming isolated and talk to someone. Other people’s high-conflict behavior is not about you. It’s about the other person’s inability to logically solve problems and manage themselves. We have a saying: “When you’re personally attacked, it’s NOT about you.” I try to remind myself of that every day in this type of work. Best wishes, Bill Eddy.

Barbara , Columbia SC   04/10/11
Bullying/haressment at work
I have been a victim of bullying/haressment at work. It has caused me so much despair, I became suicidal after the last incident. I could not work for two days, and returned after the weekend a total of four days that caused me tremendous distress. I've begun to feel better, and I'm hopeful that perhaps this time, something will be done about my supervisor who perpetuates this kind of behavior at work. I have filed an haressment/greivance with senior management and the HR department. I pray this unlawful treatment will not continue to be tolerated. It is painful; it hurts and is demoralizing. I'am glad there is an outlet that allowed me to voice this problem. Thank You

Ken , North Augusta SC   02/23/11
Some things not mentioned
What about the one that take you aside and try to show you their way to do the job, that you will never do right. Some go behind your back to prove how stupid you are. They will also push you quietly to try to get you mad, then tell people, “See look”. You’re not a good worker and I will make your work look bad to prove it. So when your supervisor sees your work is not right when you know you have done it right, your job is in jeopardy. They also tell people and others join in to make you question every thing you do then you do start messing up. This is true what I found that most black people do this, then when you find out all there doing to you they make up a lie to say you’re a racist. I have lost 3 jobs because of black people bulling me. They have even verbally abused me with races remarks towards me, but if I bring it to the supervisor they don’t do any thing. If you’re new they will target you and even gang up to get you fired.

Sara    10/06/10
I know of one 'bully' (who happens to be gay) at work. The guy can be nice, but for some reason, he has the need to put down or judge everyone - boss, coworkers, clients, and friends included. He openly admits being a racist and believes in putting people in their place.

Vicki , St. Albans VT   07/31/10
Bullying at work
These stories could be my own which leads me to believe that work place bullying it very wide spread. For me it's the HR Manager who's the bully and she is targeting me because I am friends with someone else at work she hates. She actually told another Manager that anyone who was friends with this girl she was going after them too. Just last week she gave me the finger after I passed the door way of a manager who she was in talking to. That manager felt so upset about this he called me in after to tell me what she did. I reported it only to get the standard "I'll investigate this" now just calm down and don't let it bother you statement. I don't think management takes this kind of thing seriously and they see it as personality conflicts. If I hear one more time that we need to try to work together I'm going to puke. It's hard to work with someone who demeans you, talks about you behind your back, makes rude gestures towards you, disregards you personal health and safety, sends you snarky and rude emails, demands your attention to matters that aren't your job and has in fact hit another employee (off company time and property)and blackened her eye. All known by upper management, all overlooked. I have adopted a mind set that it is what it is and until I can find a new job, I'll have to get through each day the best I can. Thanks for the education on workplace bullies.

Mikaela , Tulsa ok   06/24/10
being bullied and boss doesnt care
I have 2 girls at work that bully me for no reason. one of them got in my face the other day screming and pointing in my face and I had enough so I stood up to her and defended myself. I told my team leader and have been telling her about it for awhile now. She said ok thats enough of her treating you this way I'm taking it higher (because the manager had been on vacation it went to the person above manager). At the end of the day guess who gets in trouble...ME for sticking up for myself. I should have just walked away (this is what I was told) and that I waisted her whole day dealing with this issue and I need to learn to work with these girls. ARE YOU KIDDING ME?? Now Im lost and depressed and hate going to work knowing that these girls can get away with anything. I also told that lady that I felt threatened by her and she did not talk to her once to tell her she needed to stay away from me.

Mary , Dublin   02/03/10
I have worked with lots of bullies. but in my last job I was very lucky to have worked with girls who were understanding when one person was horrible and I left work every day crying. I even got sick because of her.She shouted at me in front of the children, compared me to other members of staff, whispered to other staff in front of me She was so nice in front off everyone and the boss but in the clasroom she was terrible. Some of the things she said were cutting and she had no respect for anyone. nothing pleased her.I never told the boss as other members of staff would have made my life a misery. Unfortunally I lost my job due to cut backs and thankfully got another on. There is a bully here and when I complained to the boss (who did not handle it good) she has made my life a misery since. She wont let people talk to me and has two sets of rules for the people she likes and those she does not. I am not the only person she does it to. She has the problem not me as i do my job as best I can. She really does not understand the job I do and told the 2nd boss what I should be really be doing in her opinion. I have had counscelling which helped but it does not stop the depression and feeling of total fear and non stop thinking about what she will do next. It is a long road that has no turning and bullies will have their turn some way or another. thanks for such a good article

Kathleen , Los Angeles CA   12/10/09
Defining personality types
Hi Bill, Do you have any substantive research to support your 4 personality types or are you making these up to reflect your vast experience? If you have documentation, I'd appreciate a citation. Yours, K

Nancy , Homestead Fl     07/24/09
Being bullied in the workplace
Thanks for the feedback to my problem.Here in Florida,with me it got worse.When I told HR and her boss (2x) she subsided for a little bit but then it started again.She found ways to blame me for errors and incompetence when in actuality she made so many similar or worst mistakes.I tried to get it all down-the tasks she gave me were impossible to complete in the time she wanted but they were completed.She stated at times I was 'stupid' and unprofessional-even in front of co-workers she said if she had to do my job, why did they need me?She would sabatoge my work and if it was effective,she got the credit but if it caused problems to anyone,it was my fault even though it was per her instructions to do it that way.She finally found reason to fire me and I've never been fired.I am so depressed/distraught and feel humiliated.What can I do about it?No one in the company did anything about it.No doubt she kept records of everything that 'I' did.I have to live with this in my work record now.Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

Renee , Grand Island NE     05/17/09
bullying or assault?
I am glad to know I am not alone. But I wasn't strong enough to take what I was going through at work anymore. I walked out. I did get a little paniced and went back asking for my job. It was aweful and humiliating. The same bullies I left were still in denial. My faith is to hope it will stop. Because there are a lot of victims. Im very depressed. I felt like I was going crazy. Maybe I am. Is there anything I can do? I felt mistreated and assaulted. There were definitely unfair employment practices going on. I can't begin to type them all down here. It isn't fair I'm out of work, because I won't take abuse. I am looking for another job. But, not without fear of the same thing happening again. I don't feel as confident getting a job as I used to.

carmen , Mitchell SD   05/16/09
bullying,harassing in the workplace
thank you for your articles and comments. i to can relate to this. first there were one, then the new supervisor, then a new employee and another supervisor and then the employer. i was the best emplyee, loyal, dedicated, and more {but the problem is the bullies make themselves out to be victims instead of instigators,} when in fact they are the ones who steal from the company, lie,sexually harass the men, bully others and have new victims, they burn them, throw silverware, degrade them call them would never hear these things about me. {they are able to go from employment to employment( which they have) because they know they can get away with it.} one instigator even makes {sexual advances to the 2 men workers and the men can't say anything because of losing their jobs,} {because the instigator can turn it into her becoming the victim,} which is not true, who will protect the honest, loyal male workers. how do they protect themselves from such women.{i know of a situation right now.} he would have alot of other women who would stick up for him. he has never been that way to me or others. my complaints were not takin seriously and i resigned after 7 years. with ending having seizures i never had in my life,i am older than them. my complaints were not takin seriously. {employer asked a co worker if my complaints were made up. she told employer they are not.} i started another employment, after working 2 days one of the harassers took a part time job with the same employer while still working the job i resigned from. she's givin me a few problems, but i have spoken to my new supervisor and he is monitoring the situation. thank god someone believes in me.i was employed 4 years at old employment long before they started, now does all this make sense. i still don't understand all of this crap. how can an employer not see or hear anything or are they just ignoring the situation. i want to speak out for the victims who may not be as strong as i was. i put up with it for 3 years, having seizures every year 1 month apart. i could go on and on about these situations, i feel something needs to be done and quick. i have changes i'd like to make in the workplace if given an opportunity to help protect victims. i have learned alot from this situation. i'm 52 years old what would i have to gain from making them the victim and me the instigator. employers does that make sense, not to me, think about it. never have i ever worked or lived a situation of such deceit, lies, humiliation ever. someone had told a friend of mine when she asked if i was there that was i even fired, when infact i resigned with a 30 day notice and worked the 30 days with all the crap, even quitting didn't help.i'm glad i logged everything with times, dates, witnesses, etc. witnesses of incidents aren't even questioned.if they had been i would still have my old job,instigators would be gone. if the employer was fair to all employees. i started my new job on 10/15/ 2008. my new employer left a written message for me on 11/25/2008 that read he wishes that everyone had the same attitude when it comes to customer service and he appreciated the calls i made to follow up to make sure everyone recieved what they are suppose to, and that he was glad i took the initative to make the calls i did.and the customers appreciated the follow up. i'm still upset over the way my situation was handled at last employment and eat,sleep,dream it plus worry about other victims,and i told some of them before i left watch yourself and beware. the signs, behaviors, etc, to watch for, but most new from what i went through because they were witnesses that were never asked about incidents. {but,last employer i am your loss.} thank you, for letting me comment even though i could go on for hours about all this.

Cary Silverstein, Fox Point WI     10/19/08
Workplace Bullies
Thank you for an interesting article. Bullies always look for targets in the workplace. Employees and supervisors need to be taught how identify and deal with these aggressive personalities in a positive manner. I have addressed this problem a number of years ago in an article for the Small Business Times in Milwaukee. The link to this article is and you can search for the article under my name or the topic. This is a topic we address in our negotiation training programs.

Noa Zanolli, Bern, Switzerland     10/17/08
Bullies at work
Thank you for your article! I am always delighted when this subject is being addressed and persons, perpetrators, targets, organizations, and attorneys gain more awareness about this devastating problem. You may want to compare notes with my article "When Conflict in the Workplace Escalates to Emotional Abuse" at: as well as see our website: regarding our book on the subject. May I add that in Europe, the term mobbing has, since the early nineties, become a household word! Wishing you all the best in your endeavours to assist targets and organizations to gaining more awarenss about this compley issue.

Dina , Boston MA     10/16/08
Rehabilitating a Bully
Thank you for such an insightful article on an emerging and unfortunate trend in today's workplace. Bullies are born out of insecurity, lack of social skill and frustration, based on my years as a workplace mediator and Ombuds. Bullies bully because it works! The trick is to give them new tools for success. Organizations that want to improve morale and effectively handle a bully should consider conflict coaching along with any counseling. While counseling can probe the emotional side of the issue, conflict coaching provides the bully with practical strategies for interacting successfully colleagues without resorting to demeaning tactics. Once the conflict-challenged bully show improvement smart managers will look for ways to re-introduce the employee to his or her colleagues that highlight those new collaborative skills learned via coaching. As the workplace becomes more troubled by bullying, progressive mediators should sharpen their coaching skills and develop focused practices. Dina Lynch Eisenberg

Debra , Portland OR   10/15/08
Bullying vs. Hostile Work Environment
Thank you for this important article. Employees frequently equate bullying with a hostile work environment. However, as employment attorneys know, if there is no Title VII or state law discrimination involved, there is no claim for hostile work environment. Do you believe mediation is a viable alternative for dealing with workplace bullying? Thank you.