It’s happening in your workplace and your people are suffering. What are you doing about it?

Several years ago, when Vida Thomson worked in the HR department of a Canadian engineering company, a younger female employee approached her to complain about an older man whose behaviour offended her. “The comments weren’t overly sexual or racist, but they could be interpreted that way,” recalls Thomson, now the founder and president of Vancouver-based Flourish Career Consulting. “He understood how his comments could be offensive, and we worked it out one-on-one.”

Such a positive outcome doesn’t always resolve workplace bullying incidents, which are increasingly common in Canadian businesses. According to a 2018 Forum Research survey, half of respondents (55%) reported that they, a co-worker or both have been bullied in the workplace. In 2014, Joseph Grenny and David Maxfield, co-authors of Crucial Conversations and Influencer, conducted a survey, Does Bullying Provide Job Security?  One finding was remarkable — a whopping 96% of respondents admitted they have experienced workplace bullying.

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Stressed teenager sitting on a sofa.

Expert Advice on Online Bullying

Bullying that occurs online, whether via email, social media or messaging apps such as Slack, should be expertly managed. Three experts, David C. Yamada, Janet Salopek and Paul Fairlie offer this advice:

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Dave Silverberg

Written By

David is a freelance journalist, editor, writing coach, workshop facilitator, spoken word poet, and former artistic director of Toronto Poetry Slam. I’ve been published in dozens of publications such as The Washington Post, The Globe & Mail, The Toronto Star, BBC News, Business Insider, Vice, Popular Mechanics, New Scientist, and many more.


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