Bullying is a hot topic lately. It even has its own .gov domain. From schoolyard bullying to cyber-bullying, and fat-shaming to slut-shaming, Websters is about to get a slew of new phrases. But one bully we don’t hear about often enough is the workplace bully. Could it be you? Here are 13 signs you might be an office bully.
1. People avoid eye contact with you. No, you’re awesomeness is not blinding. People who don’t respect you won’t look you in the eye.
2. You talk over people. Think back to your last conversation with a coworker. Do you remember what he/she said? If not, there’s a good chance you weren’t listening. Give your coworkers a chance to respond; count to five between each of your points.
3. You blame others for your mistakes. No one is perfect and throwing someone under the bus is cowardly. Own your mistakes. Apologies go a long way.
4. You dismiss coworkers’ suggestions. Your ideas aren’t always best. Entertain some new ones.
5. You throw criticism like it’s candy. No one’s work is all bad, all the time. For every negative or constructive comment, find two positives.
6. You use e-mail to say what you really think. There’s a term for this. It’s called “passive-aggressive.” Face your frustrations with maturity. Humility is worthy of respect.
7. No one comes to you for advice. You don’t listen, you blame, you dismiss suggestions, you criticize, and you are passive-aggressive. Would you ask you for advice?
8. You surround yourself with “yes men and women.” It’s hard to control people who think for themselves, isn’t it? If control is the only way you feel powerful, then you’re pretty weak. If someone disagrees with you, try this line, “Hm. Tell me more about why you think that.” The results could be mind-blowing.
9. You actively ignore colleagues. Yeah, that’s a jerk move.
10. Hurting people feels oh-so-good. Guess what? That adrenaline rush you get when you hurt someone? You can get that some rush by helping someone. Try it. It’s way more satisfying.
11. Water cooler conversation halts when you enter the room. That’s an obvious sign.
12. People say you’re a horrible person. Not everything people say is true. But if you hear the same thing over and over, it just might be.
13. You’re actually a horrible person.
If you identified for more than half of those signs, you might be an office bully. But have no fear, there’s a quick fix: Stop.
Have you ever been bullied in the workplace?