Bullying or harassment in the work place

301 posts in this topic

I don't have a fancy cool job, but the owner of the place I work at is a nutjob, talks crap about his own employees behind their backs and encourages them to do the same. Because I don't want to fuel that fire, I never say anything negative about anyone, ever--even when he digs and fishes for it. He has even tried to "confide" in me things that others have said about me in an attempt to get retaliatory information about them, as if I would be silly and immature enough to fall into that trap. I couldn't really give less of a rat's ass what my co-workers think of me as long as they're respectful to my face.

 

I agree with the others. The problem starts at the top. A manager worth his salt will not take the rantings of one co-worker seriously without doing his own research, and if he finds that the ranter's claims were unsubstantiated he will tell that person to stfu about it already and stop dragging down morale. Workplace negativity is seriously damaging to productivity.

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Some possibly useful sites:

http://www.bullyonline.org/

http://finance.groups.yahoo.com/group/bullyonline/

http://bobsutton.typepad.com/my_weblog/2007/08/the-latest-tips.html

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ok, I didn't want to create a whole new thread here. I thought about posting under the ladies thread, but realized the guys may be able to help me too.

 

I have serious issues in the work place. I have talked many a times to my boss and she either says its nothing, or that she will do something and it continues.

 

It is everything from trying to get me fired even saying I laced peoples water with cleaning solution, to blaming me for theft, complaints that come in 3-4 times a week, and now regarding my pregnancy.

 

I have heard about people being written sick according to work related stress. I am wondering how that works, and if it can be done due to the pregnancy since the daily stress and panic attacks or taking a huge toll on my body and surely the baby as well. I get upset to the point of vomiting or extreme panic attacks and the events are not wide spread, Last two were Friday and then today so only a 1 day break from the drama.

 

I do not have the ability to sue, so I am not looking to find a lawyer, my husband works in the same hospital in a different department so I don't want to make a big shit and hurt his career.

 

I am just trying to find my options to remove myself from this situation which seems to be escalating rather then getting better. I go into mutterschutz (sic) begging of November.

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I was just curious if that can be done on longer terms, as one week dont make much of a difference, they come back full swing the minute I come back. I am just trying to make it through to the beginning of the Mutterschutz.

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Your boss is awful for not helping you! Are you sure she is not in on it?

 

Have you told yor boss that this is affecting your health? And, I mean, not shyly, but very seriously and matter-of-fact and making it obvious you're upset about her lack of help? It can't be in her interest to have you go off on an extended paid sick leave, can it?

 

What does your husband think of all this? Is there anything he can do, people he can talk to?

 

Definitely talk to a sympathetic doctor about your symptoms. This work environment is definitely dangerous to your pregnancy if you're doing as badly as you describe! A doctor can probably do more than give you sick-leave for a mere week! Switch doctors if you are not getting appropriate help.

 

Get legal or other counsel at one of those bullying helplines, especially if your boss keeps being unhelpful even if you seriously confront her about this. You cannot be the first person in a position where legal action would harm a partner's career. There have to be ways of protecting yourself that they can tell you about.

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As of now it is hard to tell if she has any intentions of doing anything. For a long time she insisted it was normal. She even once told me to my face that if the other girls says so it must be true.

 

Now while I was written sick they did the same things and she started to wonder. They complained about me and even made some bold assertions that were implausible as I was not even working.

 

This week I was able to bring her a harassing note left for me, so it took it beyond the I think and I heard level.

 

This further escalated today, when it came back to her that very harsh and threatening comments were overheard about me and my pregnancy by the second boss. Note I do not know what was said she just explained to me she was made aware. And this behavior she observed was the room full of all women (maybe getting ready or end of the day unsure)

 

So the situation peaks with this one front women who shares a wagon with me, but it all the employees.

 

She said she would talk to the woman regarding the letter. But I am scared this will only make matters worse.

 

Last time she intervened, she just went to the women and told her I complained and to deal with me. Well that obviously did not go over well.

 

I told her yesterday that it is out of control and that I am even waiting to go to a psychiatrist. The problem is my appointment is mid june.

 

Also my husband is up for contract renewal next month so now is a very sensitive time regarding his renewal status.

 

This whole issue began shortly after I Started. I was asked questions about why I did things a certain way which reveled the other woman was doing some things wrong and she got in trouble. Since then she makes sure my life is a living hell.

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I think you should be able to get more than a week. A woman I was working with in Canada went to her GP and was written off for stress leave for a month. I know another person in Canada who was being harrassed at work who was on extended sick leave for months and I have the feeling that in Germany, it is even more common that people go on extended sick leave for various reasons than it is in Canada. I work with one woman here who took 4 months off because of a fractured arm and will still 8 months after it happened complain that it hurts but only when she's being asked to do something she doesn't like. Another person was off work for 2 years and one of the manpower workers has even been off sick for about 3 months for no reason at all. We know that because he lies about being at the hospital at the same time he's been seen downtown having a good time with his buddies.

 

Talk to your doctor about it and see what kind of solutions he or she offers you.

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Seems like you're up against a team of petty woman with a bad work ethic who can't forgive you for doing your job well. They are pathetic. And you boss sure doesn't seem very competent with regard to handling employee conflicts. That's a terrible situation. I especially feel for you about the long wait for a psychologist appointment. I've been there and it's disheartening.

 

But on the plus side, your boss now has some evidence that supports your case, which will hopefully help you get her to realize how serious this is. Are you using the word "bullying" to describe to her what is happening? Or rather, "mobbing" which she must have heard about? Can you get this second boss involved? Have you told her when the trouble started and why, emphasized how systematic it is, that it's a group effort?

 

It might help if you had suggestions for you boss about what she could do. Do you want to have a meeting between you and those women, some sort of mediation session? What would make your workdays better and what do you think your boss can do to make it happen? Can your work place or work partners or something like that be rearranged to avoid contact with the bullies?

 

I suspect if you can offer suggestions, your boss might be open to them.

 

I still think getting into contacting a helpline for this kind of problem is the best idea. I'm sure they can make a lot of good suggestions for your case!

 

Oh, and congratulations on the pregnancy! Your baby is sharing some tough times with you. :) Hang in there!

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Word of advice to being written off sick for stress. I have a friend who was written off sick for stress reason for over 2 months because he was being bullied by his boss. Be careful though with doing such a thing, the doctor labeled him as being "mentally sick", and now he is required to see a psychiatrist 3 times a week after work for the next 6 months. I know him pretty well, and he is not crazy, but the doctor had to label him so for such a long leave of absence.

 

I am also being bullied at my current job by one idiot of a boss. This boss of mine likes to insult his employees in front of everyone including clients; think spoiled rich kid playing boss at daddy's business. Now normally I would just take him out back in the parking lot and give him what he deserves, but instead I'm looking for a new job. I can do more damage this way seeing as how his family is a family friend, when I leave I will tell his boss(his parents) exactly why I am leaving to work for someone else. Expose the truth and let them know what a piece of shit their son is. In the mean time until I have a new job lined up, I have started to fight fire with fire.

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This week I was able to bring her a harassing note left for me, so it took it beyond the I think and I heard level.

You still have the note, I hope, or at least a photocopy?

 

As already mentioned elsewhere on this thread, make sure you keep any material evidence of harassment, and write down the details of all incidents - date and time, persons involved, what was said by whom, etc.

 

I'm sorry to hear about the difficult situation you're facing, especially during what should be a happy time for you and your husband. Hope it can all be resolved in the best possible way for you. Good luck!

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Hey GUys-

 

Most of these are women in their older who have worked 20 plus years here.

 

The second boss, is actually just one cleaning lady who helps supervise, she is not equal to or above my boss, who is the head of the cleaning department.

 

And she made me bring her the letter, so I no longer have it in my position.

 

As far as people above her, it would be someone from another city, not anyone at this location.

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What to do against idiots who bully you in the office:

 

A)

 

1: Take floppy disc

2: Take lighter

3: Scroll all the flint of lighter onto floppy disc

4: Insert floppy disc into "victims" computer

5: Make sure computer is switched off

6: Take camera

7: Wait for idiot colleague to switch on computer in the morning and take photo as tower catches fire

8: Post it to the facebook account of all other colleagues

 

B)

 

1: Find photo of bully (online CV, etc ...)

2: Go to http://www.gay.de

3: Make "nice" advert

4: Be sure to include bully's internal company e-mail address, direct telephone number, and mobile

 

C)

 

1: Invite few friends out for drink

2: Invite bully along

3: Spike bully with some rohypnol or valium

4: Get bully really drunk

5: Use phone of bully to call his girlfriend/ wife up and then hang up

6: Wait for partner of bully to call back while he is tripping his face off

 

D)

 

1: Change desktop and screensaver background of bully to some distasteful images (gay porn is usually a favourite)

 

E)

 

1: Go to http://www.craigslist.de and go to the "Shout-out" forum.

2: Make "nice" advert about bully, making sure to include their full name, etc ...

3: Welcome bully to the wonderful world of GOOGLE

 

F)

 

1: Wrap telephone cord around keyboard

2: Hit bully repeatidly over the head with keyboard while phone cord strangles him/ her

3: Laugh as loud as you can

 

If none of the above work, please get back in touch while I suggest some more options.

 

Regards,

 

James

The Destroyer of Office Bullies

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Oh, James Mason, now I know why you played all those slightly sinister roles.

 

I do like the way your mind works.

 

Hehehehehehe!

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P.S.

 

G)

 

1: Go to http://www.shitzooi.nl/index.php?pagina=mailtje%20anoniem

2: Send email to company owner (E.g. boss@nike.com) from bully (E.g. bully@nike.com)

3: Tell boss he is a pathetic stain on life and you enjoyed every minute you had with his wife

4: Wait for bully to be called into the bosses office

 

As no boss is smart enough to figure out anonymous mail sending and wouldnt know how to trace it the only reasonable explination would be that it came from the bully itself ... Thereby ... EXIT bully :)

 

P.P.S.

 

H)

 

1: Go to local pharmacy complaining of severe constipation

2: Hide all office toilet paper

3: Open coffee machine

4: Carefully insert entire contents of whatever the pharmacy gave you into coffee machine

5: Once again, take more photos and share with all other colleagues on facebook

 

P.P.P.S

 

I)

 

1: Buy one item of Akfix super glue http://www.supplierlist.com/photo_images/71451/Super_Glue.jpg

2: Cover bully's phone (both digits and mouth and ear piece) with contents of package

3: I think you've guessed it ... more photos and more facebook

 

Done for now ...

 

Best regards,

 

James Mason

Destroyer of Office Bullies :P

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What to do against idiots who bully you in the office:

 

A)

 

1: Take floppy disc

 

Now I just need to go back to about 1999 when I last used one of them.

 

What's with the PPPSing verbal diahrrea there James?

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No need.. I've still got some I can lend you ... and they still work. Had to check something on them a couple of weeks ago.

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Which means you just need to get the colleague to use a computer from that time at work ... I think he'll be grateful if it goes up in flames.

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Work bullies really suck and they are hard to get rid of.

 

I don't know how things work at a hospital but since it is a very large place normally I would be surprised if there wasn't a Betriebsret counsil there. We had one at my old job and they are normally willing to help you address situations where your boss is not able to (has the balls to) help. Ask around. If they cannot directly help you they will most likely be able to tell you how others have dealt with the situation.

 

If you dont have one then go to HR. I can understand if you dont want to risk your husbands career but there are very few things worse than being unhappy at work.

 

I really hope the situation gets better. And if anyone leaves notes then make sure to make copies..

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