When workplace bullying happens, it’s not just the organization that suffers a financial blow. It’s also the workplace bullying target. In a 2011 Workplace Bullying Institute (WBI) poll, more than half of respondents who lost a job from workplace bullying said there either wasn’t a next job or they took a pay cut.
“To the 53 percent who suffered economic setback, we emphasize the benefit to personal health and sanity of leaving the toxic workplace. You were too good for that place anyway,” says WBI.
“The saddest fact is that over one-quarter of bullied targets were not able to replace their lost job. We know that bullying comes uninvited. No one asked to be intimidated or humiliated. Since the most veteran, competent workers are targeted, it is safe to assume that they once loved their jobs very much. They simply wanted to be left alone to do the work for which they were getting paid. But bullying displaced them and put them on the street involuntarily, regardless of whether they were fired or had to quit to preserve their health. This is the tragedy of workplace bullying,” adds WBI.
These statistics don’t even take into account the potential net loss to a target when he or she has added health expenses.
The light at the end of the tunnel
Though the majority suffered financially from workplace bullying, of those who did get another job, nearly 40 percent earned more money in the next job. “If you move along quickly enough without suffering severe health harm, you will have a new life. Getting out can be positive,” says WBI.
Advocates have been working hard to spread the word about workplace bullying. Take part in these two new ways:
Face Workplace Bullying Art Display
To commemorate International Workers’ Day on Friday, May 1, we will unveil a public art display in Boston (like http://www.insideoutproject.net/en). Submit a photo of your face and your story:
– Look straight into the camera, with a plain background, and take a picture of your face only (serious expression).
– Save your photo as: Boston_US_Torii_(your name).jpg Example: Boston_US_Torii_JaneMiller.jpg
– Submit a BRIEF summary of your story (250 words or less). We reserve the right to edit.
– Send your photo (hi-res only) and story to email@example.com no later than MARCH 15. We want to submit a minimum of 20 portraits.
Financial Impact Survey
Take this new survey so that we can let legislators understand the financial impact to businesses at the State House hearing (date to be announced):
Take the Financial Impact Survey.
There are other ideas in the works, from flyering at events across Massachusetts to a “What is workplace bullying?” forum.
Got an idea to spread the word about workplace bullying?