Bullies At Work
It is highly likely that you have encountered at least one bully in your life, whether it was in school, in the neighborhood, or in the workplace. Most bullies are easy to recognize, but sometimes their methods are too sneaky and subtle for you to discern until you have been a victim.
Bullies affect your bottom line
From merely annoying to downright dangerous, bullies can affect your company’s bottom line. They reduce productivity causing your profitability to suffer. The bully persona creates havoc by lowering your workforce’s morale, reducing loyalty, and affecting your ability to keep absenteeism in check. Who wants to waste time and money with increased HR challenges such as more workman’s compensation claims, employee turnover, recruitment, training, legal issues, and just flat out dealing with the unpleasant situations that bullies cause? With that mess taking up your time, who has the energy or resources to innovate and grow their business?
How can you recognize bullies?
It may sometimes be difficult to define bullying in a legal sense, but most times we can recognize bullies when we see them: screamers that abuse and humiliate, two-faced co-workers that damage your reputation or steal credit for your work, self-important people who think they are indispensable, and those that keep information or resources from you that you need to do your job – just to name a few examples. In more extreme cases, you may even encounter bullies that are sociopaths or psychopaths. With no empathy or typical conscience to deter them, they can be very destructive. Often very intelligent, capable and charming – they use these traits to rise to positions of power. They have no qualms about maneuvering and using you to get what they want, regardless of the consequences to you or your company.
How can you avoid bullies in your business?
How can your company avoid bullies and the negative impact they have on your workplace? Let’s start with hiring practices: develop some questions for your interview process that help you recognize how your applicant thinks about working relationships. Instead of questions that require only a short, canned response, ask questions that lead the candidate to tell you stories about work experiences working with teams. Don’t accept the standard, “I’m a team player” comment. Ask for more details of specific projects and how each person contributed to the success. LISTEN!
Company policy regarding bullies
Consider background checking to be standard practice when you are hiring. There is likely to be clues that come up in their background reports that will help you make an informed decision, especially information from previous employers. Run-of the-mill bullies may not have a criminal record, but more serious culprits often have some fraud, DUIs or even violence in their background. And, do check their degrees and licenses to make sure they are real since sociopaths and psychopaths do not hesitate to manipulate the truth.
Update your policies
Creating a policy that clearly defines bullying can show that your company is serious about not tolerating bullies. Make sure that each employee feels comfortable reporting the behaviors and knows there will not be a negative impact or retaliation for doing so, even if they are reporting a manager. Have clear guidelines on the process for handling and investigating the complaint and what the consequences will be for violators of your policy.
Hire right the first time
Partnering with a CRA (Consumer Reporting Agency) with the services you need to fill in your HR gaps can be an economical solution. The right CRA partner can help you recruit, integrate your system, perform background screening, provide education and license verification, drug testing at convenient locations, and support throughout the process. Feel confident that you are bringing the best hire into your company by having done due diligence both legally and ethically for your employees and customers. A professional CRA partner pays for itself by avoiding costly hiring mistakes. For a free consultation or more information, contact Genesis Background Screening Services at 866 944-0041 ext 101. Online, email or visit www.genesisbackgroundscreening.com. You can sign up to be emailed whenever we post a new blog at https://genesisbackgroundscreening.com/subscribe-to-the-blog/
Genesis Background Screening is not a law firm and provides our blogs for informational purposes only. Blog is not a substitute for experienced legal advice. Research laws or regulations mentioned in our blogs and ask your legal counsel any questions you have to be sure your organization is within the law and compliant with regulations.
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