What Every Target of Workplace Bullying Needs to Know

Bullied By A Deeply Insecure Boss


(Australia)

For the first 2 years in my job I had excellent feedback about my performance. I was passionate, dedicated and creative. During this time I was given more responsibility and worked hard to develop my skills, knowledge and professional network.

Perplexingly, as my performance and positive feedback from my colleagues increased, the worse the feedback manager became. She also began (unfairly) loading me up with additional work and removing responsibilities without explanation. She gave me deliberately vague instructions (and therefore was able to criticise me whatever I did) and withheld information and resources so that it was difficult or impossible to do my work.

Each time I tried to address concerns about these practices with her, she insisted there was nothing wrong with her behaviour and the problem was all to do with my personal shortcomings such as my ability to cope / my time management skills.

This bullying went on for about 12 months, it has affected me quite badly - I have been badly depressed, withdrawn from friends and colleagues, deeply self-conscious of others' perceptions of me, lost confidence in my professional abilities and my ability to interact with others. The most debilitating outcome has been social phobia resulting in anxiety and difficulty with leaving the house.

It took a while for me to realise what my manager was doing, but once I did - with the help of my union representative - I took the matter to the human resources (HR) department. Although HR explicitly supported my manager, they did agree to a 10 week payout and the process gave me a forum to express my concerns openly and uninterrupted with my manager present.

Now I am concentrating on getting her criticisms and judgements out of my head. I keep reminding myself that she was actively trying to break down my confidence and control me BECAUSE I was good at my job and because people liked and valued me. And when I am ready, I know I'll find a good job with a supportive manager. I also know to trust my judgement and hope I will be able to recognise and deal with a bully sooner in future.

Comments for Bullied By A Deeply Insecure Boss

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Deeply Insecure Boss
by: Linda Guirey - The Marbles Expert

You are absolutely right. You were targeted because you were good at your job and you posed a threat. Most bullies do not pick on weak and vulnerable employees, they pick on those that pose a threat, but those that they consider they can have power and control over (in this case your boss).

In most cases, targets of bullying have to leave, because very few workplaces adequately recognise bullying, the effects of bullying, the costs to the workplace and what consequences should follow.

When your health is affected, there really isn't any other choice and by leaving you are not giving in - you are taking control of your life back and deciding to move to a workplace that is more supportive.

It's a long slow road to get employers to accept and respond effectively to workplace bullying, but as speakers, trainers, advocates - we have to never give up making sure that little by little, legislation is developed that help workers confront the bullies.

Linda Guirey
Professional Speaker and Trainer
The 'Marbles' Expert
www.lindaguirey.co.nz

Psychopathically Insure Bosses
by: Trinity

It's common for bosses to bully when they feel threatened. My boss targetted me when I told her that I was enrolled to do an MBA, I was fired for 'poor work performance' the day my course started. There had been no mention of poor work performance during my entire time at that job so I was shocked. I've developed PTSD complicated by anxiety, depression and a (rational) phobia of returning to the workplace. It has been almost six months and I will never be able to work again. Workers comp are doing their investigation right now. Good luck mate.

I had the same experience
by: Anonymous

I am sorry to hear that you have been bullied. I went through same situation 5 years ago. My manager treated me very badly on the last day of my job. I was scarred and did not apply for a job for the next 2 years. Then I applied for a job in another restaurant and was badly treated by my manager during training. I cried alot and its been 5 years I am not able to join work force. I have lost confidence and think that I can never work. By the way I have a degree from university now but dont want to work as I have lost confidence.

Be careful after you leave a bullying work experience
by: Anonymous

Sometimes, after we leave a bullying/micromanaging work experience orchestrated by a very insecure boss, we tend to get desperate for work and ignore the same signs at the interview for the next job. Guess how I know that.

When you finally get your balance back after being in a severe bullying work experience be on guard when you go to the next interview. Ignoring obvious signs how the new company treats applicants and potential employees can be a tell-tale sign about the rest of your work experience.

Suggest: politely and professionally, just say "NO" and keep your feet moving onto other job opportunities. If you don't, you will wish you did. Guess how I know that one, too?

PROJECT DIRECTOR
by: Anonymous

YEAH, BY BOSS WAS AN INSECURE CEO WHO HAPPENS TO BE MY BROTHER IN LAW, WHEN EVER I EXCEL AT WORK HE ALWAYS CALL ME AT HIS OFFICE TELLING ME THAT I AM INCOMPETENT, FOR 8 YEARS HE WAS THAT. I WAS TRANSFERRED FROM ONE DEPARTMENT TO THE OTHER, BUT STILL I MADE GOOD. HE EVEN FORCE TO DO ILLEGAL ACTIVITIES JUST TO ACHIEVE HIS GOAL, BUT NOW I QUIT MY JOB BECAUSE IM GETTING OLD FOR THAT. NOW IM STARTING MY OWN SMALL BUSINESS BUT I BELIEVE SOON IT WOULD BE BIG SOMEDAY. I SAY THAT EXPERIENCE WAS NOT EASY, IT WAS HELL.. CURSE HIM AND HIS COMPANY ...

Thing is...
by: Anonymous

people higher up like to turn a blind eye because they don't know how to deal with it. As long as there are numbers and figures where they should be then nothing else matters. Unfortunately the world would be a better place if people cared about getting results the same as getting results and treating people with respect. Even in powerful positions people feel threatened, and the reason they feel threatened is because they don't believe in themselves and they project that onto others

Ups and downs
by: Anonymous

My CEO sends emails to co workers which are insulting. Rather than give direction he/she often ponders the decision whe there your skill set is valid. The work group produces in consistent fashion but sometimes the same action that landed acclaim is criticized the next day. They employ weaker employee to report on office goings-on when they haphazardly attend work.

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