Bullying in the workplace: A conversation with Dr. Debra Pepler

Bullying doesn’t occur only in the schoolyard. It’s pervasive in the workplace, too, exacting a toll on both mental health and productivity. In this podcast, Dr. Debra Pepler discusses this problem and offers practical solutions.

A world-respected authority on bullying research, Dr. Debra Pepler is a Distinguished Research Professor of Psychology at the LaMarsh Centre for Research on Violence and Conflict Resolution at York University, as well as Senior Associate Scientist at the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto. With Dr. Wendy Craig, she co-leads PREVNet – Promoting Relationships and Eliminating Violence Network. Visit the PREVNet Web site for resources on this topic.

Here are the show notes for this podcast:

Welcome and intro
Bullying in the workplace defined as a misuse of one person’s power against a co-worker. There may also be a group of people who side against a marginalized person. There are many ways to use power aggressively to distress and undermine someone else and their capacity to do work.
Many employers aren’t aware of workplace bullying; the topic is getting more attention now. However, it has always been part of the workplace ritual.
Bullying undermines both mental health and the ability to do work.
Europe is leading the way; Canada is behind. Workplaces with high levels of bullying have low levels of productivity. So, costs are real.
Sexual harassment is also a form of bullying. It’s the abuse of power with a sexual element added.
What should a person do if he or she is being bullied in the workplace? Start with the workplace harassment policy.
In Canada this is also a human rights issue.
Should the person being bullied say something to the bully? Yes, but don’t be aggressive in return. Try to catch it early before the relationship problem grows and the bullying person gains power.
Don’t bully back. It only accelerates the problem. Be assertive and use problem-solving skills.
The dream of PREVNet is to have safe and healthy relationships for every Canadian. Visit the PREVNet Web site for more information.
This podcast was sponsored by the Toronto Electrical Utilities Credit Union. Remember that your Credit Union cares about your family and your financial future. Our experts can assist you with loans and wealth management services, a full range of everyday banking services and much more. Call the Toronto Electrical Utilities Credit Union at 416.542.2522.

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