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Bullying at work

(47 Posts)
Thistle2016 Wed 04-Jan-23 20:43:40

I am the older member of my co-workers and there is a co-worker who seems to be focused on me for no apparent reason. After returning to work after Christmas shut -down it has been brought to my attention that this co-worker has created and printed and distributed to other co-workers a bingo list of phrases and words that I use. I feel targeted by this co-worker for no other reason than their personal amusement but do not know how to resolve this matter. I should add that this has impacted on me greatly and I feel targeted and have considered not returning to work for fear of being scrutinized. Any suggestions please

Grandmabatty Wed 04-Jan-23 20:46:54

Who brought it to your attention? Can you trust their motives? Would they support you if you go to your boss? It's a very unkind thing to do and looks like bullying.

Thistle2016 Wed 04-Jan-23 20:55:35

It is a very trusted co-worker who immediately destroyed the bingo list given to them and would support me. I cannot understand the reason why someone would put so much effort into producing, printing and distributing a bingo list about me, I suppose I am just requiring validation that this is totally unacceptable.

denbylover Wed 04-Jan-23 20:59:49

I’m so sorry you have been subjected to this unkindness. What a lot it says about his or her character. Head to head I think is the way to sort this. Most bullies cave in when challenged, tell her calmly, in straight language you’re not having it. If it continues go further up the chain. What an unpleasant individual this person sounds. Good luck I hope you can knock this abuse on the head.

Thistle2016 Wed 04-Jan-23 21:06:24

Thank you for your kindness, I am going to bring this to the attention of my manager I just needed reassuring that I was not being oversensitive. I have never encountered anything like this in my 40 year working life and can only conclude that this is a particularly nasty individual.

crazyH Wed 04-Jan-23 21:12:13

Such mean, nasty people about😡. You need to see your Boss about it .

Wyllow3 Wed 04-Jan-23 21:26:15

I'd take it to your boss, as long as you respect your boss as someone who will be fair and just.

The nasty co-worker may say if you go 1 2 1 , "oh you can't take a joke, a bit of Christmas fun", but its not. It needs nipping in the bud. if I were in. your shoes I could want the boss to take the nasty one aside and say, "enough, no more" but not punish but get a warning.

You may want to have think about whether you want all the workers to know about bully being called to heel and how or whether just the bully cautioned. Very situation dependant. and good for you.

I let myself be bullied by a man years a go at work and left - inadequate boss - after he then went on to bully others he was eventually got rid of. I wish I was the person I am now to deal with it!

VioletSky Wed 04-Jan-23 21:33:33

That's absolutely awful

Please do go to your manager. I'd ask your coworker if they would be willing to do so too.

fancythat Wed 04-Jan-23 21:37:27

Not maybe as important in this particular situation, but in any bullying situation, I always ask, is that person nasty to other people as well, or just you?

Thistle2016 Wed 04-Jan-23 21:42:32

Thank you everyone for your comments, it has reinforced my resolve to bring it to my managers attention.

Theexwife Wed 04-Jan-23 21:59:21

I doubt that there is any reason why they picked on you, some people are just bullies. If it wasn’t you then it would have been somebody else.

I do hope this person is dismissed and it is made clear the impact that their behaviour has on the victim.

MayBee70 Wed 04-Jan-23 22:06:52

I’m sure you know this anyway but keep a record of everything that this person does to you as and when it happens so you don’t have to trust your memory. It’s horrible when this happens. I had it with one of my bosses for years: in retrospect I don’t know how I coped x

LRavenscroft Wed 04-Jan-23 22:08:51

I am really sorry to hear this. Please nip it in the bud and take it to your manager/HR. Do you have a copy of the list they produced? Was it done on company time and using company paper? Are they male or female? Do you have a lot of co-workers or just a few? Is your boss a good boss or is your HR department good? Some of these people are very clever and sneeky and are just bullies for the sake of it. I would have a clear picture of who, what and possibly why this person does this before taking it further so you are confident in your steps when you report to your manager. Bullying should never be tolerated but I am afraid that there are some very nasty people out there who don't understand good old fashioned good behaviour.

Wyllow3 Wed 04-Jan-23 22:09:30

In hindsight - sounds recordings, screen shots, clear lists does, events..but at the time if often creeps up on you.

good idea if friendly co-worker will go with you but not to expect?

Drina01 Wed 04-Jan-23 22:13:14

Should you need it ACAS has been a tremendous help to me in recent months as I too felt forced to resign over age discrimination and bullying tactics by both my manager and someone who was on maternity leave and then came back. It’s effectively ended my career however ACAS helped me gain some justice using early consiliation though to prove my point I requested a subject access request where I was named on various meetings and email. I had my proof. I didn’t go through the grievance procedure as felt it was heavily biased within the organisation. What I gained was closure.

Drina01 Wed 04-Jan-23 22:14:37

Actually conciliation is spelt with a c not s !

Doodledog Wed 04-Jan-23 22:14:46

What are the others involved like? If they would be on your side you could style it out by using all of the phrases and getting them to score them until the bully wins, then all shout 'House' together. That way you have made your point and shown up the bully for what they are, without needing to involve your manager.

LauraNorderr Wed 04-Jan-23 22:15:18

What a very cruel and nasty thing to do. You definitely must take this to your manager, higher up the chain if not dealt with adequately.
Good luck to you Thistle, you sound like a good person, no one deserves this sort of treatment and I’m glad you have at least one supportive and decent friend in the workplace, probably more once the bully is outed.

Mollygo Wed 04-Jan-23 22:23:58

What an unkind thing to do. Definitely bullying. It would help your case if you can obtain a copy of the list.
Good luck with your follow up.

JaneJudge Wed 04-Jan-23 22:27:32

As well as keeping a record do not respond or try and be kind to them and let them show who they are to other people too

Caleo Wed 04-Jan-23 23:06:50

Thistle, you are not being too sensitive. I hope you can soon take this to the manager and the unpleasant colleague will be admonished, and you be assured that the manager or the personnel person is always available for you should you need them.

Dee1012 Thu 05-Jan-23 00:38:44

As the manager of a team, I'd be horrified if any of them treated a colleague in this way... it's cruel and it's bullying.
I'd have no qualms whatsoever in beginning disciplinary action against them.
Please speak to your manager about this and any other incidents of poor behaviour that you have experienced from the individual.

biglouis Thu 05-Jan-23 01:28:09

I would not confront the bully directly. Bullies are weak people and can often turn any confrontation into a scenario with themselves as the victim. They could accuse you of bullying them. This is particularly the case where they have drawn others into their clique. If others are involved this is known as "mobbing" or corporate bullying,

Compile as much evidence as possible and report to your manager or, if appropriate, HR.

This reminds me of an incident which was brought to my attention by a team member some years ago. A person in a position of authority had played a cruel joke on a junior member of staff, by the misuse of company letterhead and other resources. The person had misused his authority to draw others into the circle. I had only heard of the incident by heresay but I tipped off my immediate superior who investigates and gathered evidence. The affair went to the CEO and the guilty staff member was fortunate to escape dismissal. He was given a formal written warning and told that the offence would remain on his record for three years. Effectively, he was being denied any further promotion in the organization.

The entire staff (who had colluded with the bully) was split up and transferred to other locations over the following months.

HousePlantQueen Thu 05-Jan-23 12:01:26

This is a very unkind thing to do and could be the start of building up a 'gang' of supporters of the bully with the purpose of isolating you. Even if it isn't this serious, it is a dreadful thing to do and needs to be dealt with. Go directly to your HR manager and make a formal complaint which will then have to be dealt with. This cannot and should not be dismissed as 'banter', the escape clause of bullies when caught out. Good luck.

Aveline Thu 05-Jan-23 14:31:51

The others are right. Go straight to your manager. This is unacceptable behaviour in a workmate (or anyone really).
Please let us know how you get on. Good luck.