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Bullying on rise in office; mostly by bosses: Survey

Press Trust of India  |  New York 

Besides, nearly half of the employees do not confront their bullies and let go a majority of such incidents unreported, found the survey conducted among close to 3,900 employees across the US.

As per the survey conducted online by research firm Harris Interactive for human capital solutions provider CareerBuilder, 35 per cent of the workers said they have felt bullied at work, up from 27 per cent last year.

While 16 per cent of these workers reported they suffered health-related problems as a result of bullying, 17 per cent decided to quit their jobs to escape the situation.

Among the employees who felt bullied, most of them pointed to incidents with their bosses (48 per cent) or co-workers (45 per cent).

Besides, many people also said they have been picked on by their clients and customers, as also by senior executives other than their own boss.

More than half (54 per cent) of those bullied said they were bullied by someone older than they were, while 29 per cent said the bully was younger.

As per the survey, the most common way workers reported being bullied was getting blamed for mistakes they did not make, followed by not being acknowledged, use of different standards and policies than for other workers, constant criticising and being yelled at by boss in front of others.

Other bullying tactices included belittling comments made about one's work during office meetings, gossipping, stealing credit for work, purposely excluding from projects or meetings and picking on for personal attributes.

The study further found that 51 per cent people did not confront the bully themselves.

Of those who confronted the bully, about half said the bullying stopped while 11 per cent said it got worse, and 38 per cent said the bullying did not change at all.

About 27 per cent of workers who felt bullied reported it to their Human Resources department, but no action was taken in more than half of these cases.

First Published: Sun, September 02 2012. 13:25 IST