Work Politics

6 Ways To Deal With Workplace Bullying (+ Shut it down)

how to deal with workplace bullying

Dealing with workplace bullying is mentally and physically exhausting. 

If you’re stuck in a toxic workplace, you’ve come to the right place. In this article, we’ll cover how to deal with workplace bullying and shut it down for good. 

Plus we’ll go over ways to create a paper trail to cover your behind. Let’s jump right in!

Why Should You Create a Paper Trial If You’re Being Bullied At Work? 

Creating a paper trail that documents instances of workplace bullying is a great way to protect yourself if the situation escalates to HR or legal. 

You never want to be in situations where it’s your words against theirs.

Especially if their pay grade is higher than yours. 

How to Deal with Workplace Bullying

1. Don’t React

Here’s the thing about workplace bullies — they crave a reaction from you. They’ll target your weak spots to get you to snap in front of others. 

They’ll try to trigger you hoping that you’ll fold so that others can see you as ‘the problem’ and them as the victim. Don’t fall for it. 

Keep your composure and think before you speak. Check out our tips on classy ways to tell someone off professionally.

2. Follow up with Conversations via Email 

If you’re being bullied at work, the last thing you want is “he said, she said” situations.

To avoid this, follow up with important conversations or meetings via email.

You can also request that others send you project requests via email.

Documenting and creating a paper trail of all your interactions are extremely important if you face workplace harassment. 

3. Ask Permission to Record Calls

Something about being recorded puts people on their best behavior.

And since most meetings take place virtually now, ask to record calls whenever possible. 

This helps you to have a record of work harassment.

Be sure to back up the recording somewhere you can access if you leave the company. 

4. Back Up Emails Using a Personal Email Address

If you’re terminated from your employer, you’ll no longer have access to company emails.

Therefore, it’s important to save emails to a personal account. 

You can do this by forwarding or BCC-ing important emails to your personal email when dealing with office bullies.

Again, documenting cyberbullying should be a top priority. 

5. Get a Second Opinion

Before escalating your situation, get a second opinion from an unbiased confidant.

Someone who isn’t too close to your situation, like a mentor, could help give you a different perspective.

Our emotions have a habit of misguiding us at times. Therefore, it’s important to talk through your situation with someone you trust.   

6. Escalate The Situation 

By now your work bully should sense that you’re on to them.

If the harassment hasn’t stopped, it’s time to escalate the situation to HR and/or the head of your department. 

Before escalating the situation to HR, make sure that your work performance is meeting expectations.

The last thing you want is to put a target on your back if your performance has been suffering. 

Be sure to document your meeting with HR and send a follow-up email as discussed earlier.

If your work bully is your boss, try requesting a transfer to a new team. 

If the bullying continues after speaking to HR or you’re retaliated against, consider filing a complaint with the EEOC if you work for an American company. 

Workplace Bullying — Final Thoughts 

Remember that dealing with workplace bullying is not in your job description so don’t settle.

The long-term workplace trauma and trust issues aren’t worth it. 

Hopefully, this article helps you handle the situation with ease. 

If you’re new here, be sure to subscribe for more tips on navigating workplace politics.

Plus you’ll get instant access to our Free Career Center with a bunch of helpful downloads. 

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Over To You

Have you ever dealt with workplace bullying?

We’d love to hear your story!

Let us know in the comments on social @netwerkmovement. 

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