Susan Seng ~ Author of Big Bad Bully, managing workplace bullying

Big Bad Bully – RRP $29.99
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ISBN  978-0-9872031-1-3

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Big Bad Bully Extract

Being a victim of workplace bullying can cause tremendous upset in your life.  You may not only feel powerless and frustrated, but in many cases can suffer from anxiety, stress or depression. In some cases victims can become quite ill even after leaving the workplace.

Because of the nature of this subject, I have specifically designed this book in chapters that follow on from each other. Take the time to read through the chapters in sequence.  Along the way I have placed some word association stories.  The idea behind these is to show ‘different perceptions’. This is important when faced with workplace bullying, as it is evident in many cases that the perception, held by one person, such as the manager, may be quite different from the actual experience of the person working with a bully. What you see and experience, in many cases, is not what management see or have experienced with this person; this is a deliberate objective of the bully. Bullies will look for opportunities to exhibit favourable behaviours in view of management.  They want management to see them in a caring and conscientious manner, while in reality they are cunning and well planned.  When they strike at their victims, it has not only been preplanned, it’s been rehearsed on many others before them.  You are just the next in line. Bullies may have no conscience about their organisation having to recruit new staff members. Some have no conception of the process, nor do they care. In many cases the victim never identifies the bully as the reason why they left.  Victims simply give another excuse and move on. The stigma associated with leaving due to being bullied is not an option for most. The sad thing is, it is very likely you may leave a good job because of a bully and find within your next role there’s another, maybe one that’s worse - Bullies are everywhere. So, whether you’re planning on staying within your current job or have made the decision to move on, use this opportunity to develop your skills and reclaim your confidence. You are wonderful. You are gifted and smart and courageous, and even though I’m asking you to do something that’s out of your comfort zone, it’s only going to be a little uncomfortable for a little while until you rebuild your confidence.  You will be afraid at the start. But with practice and knowing the steps to take, you’ll be fine.  You’ll know exactly what they are going to say or do and you’ll be prepared. Preparing for conflict is just as necessary as preparing for a meeting or an exam.

The first thing to know about bullies is that THEY LIE. They are individuals who want disruption and upset. That’s where they feel most comfortable. If they’re not complaining, their perception is that they’re not gaining.  This can be the result of management, which has condoned their behaviour by allowing the bully to achieve their goals. Management hasn’t been able to cope with the situation.  Not because they don’t want to address it, but because they may not be skilled enough to manage the bully’s performance. Failure to appropriately manage a bully can send the message that their behaviour is acceptable and can also result in a team’s decrease in morale, a reduction in productivity, a rise in absenteeism, and in many cases people losing loyalty towards their organisation, resulting in attitude changes.

It is important to say at the outset I am not a counsellor.  I have undertaken continuing studies in Occupational Health and Safety. The information within these pages consists of my own ideas of how to overcome workplace bullying, with the focus being on the victim’s health and wellbeing during the process.  My ideas have been developed through years of reading different material, attending workshops, interviews and through study.  The steps to follow when making a complaint against another person in the workplace will consider everyone’s feelings, not only yours.  They will consider the feelings of your manager and in the situation where it’s your manager who’s the bully, we’ll go through the steps to take positive action. We will consider the feelings of other people who may be affected as a result of the process, and we will also discuss why it is important to consider the feelings of the bully themselves.   As you read through this guide, many examples will be used and with each example, options as to what to say and suggested steps to take next are offered.

In this book we will look at examples of people who have worked with bullies for a long time before addressing the situation, and we will also look at addressing bullying behaviour at the first sign of it. Either way it won’t matter if you’ve put up with bullying for years, or if it’s just begun to raise its ugly head, you will learn the skills of what to say and what to do.  There are many examples and you will have an opportunity to learn the responses, and be able to call upon them when you need to.YOU are back in the driver’s seat…

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