Managers and supervisors are drivers of a safe work culture. Of course, with great influence, comes great responsibility and this includes dealing with bullying cases before, during, and after they occur.
To elaborate on what it means to uphold competent and empathetic safety leadership, we listed 5 processes managers need to carry out to appropriately address bullying.
Conduct intensive information drive
Managers and supervisors should be at the forefront of educational initiatives about workplace bullying. Blasting a memo via electronic mail or posting safe work reminders in the office bulletin is a valuable part of the campaign, but these should also be accompanied by in-person discussions, workshops, or focus groups (if you intend to go the extra mile). The goal is to make employees understand that bullying is not a matter to be taken lightly. There is no more powerful way to achieve this than to create a constant flow of conversation around it.
Develop an efficient system of reporting
Victims tend to keep experiences of bullying all to themselves due to fear of being misjudged. Managers and supervisors must ensure that no victim of bullying is ever discouraged from coming forward. A good way to enforce this is through a system of reporting where complainants’ details are treated with utmost confidentiality. Safety coordinators can be assigned to handle these reports before they are submitted to human resources.
Spearhead fact-finding initiative
As an impartial third party, managers and supervisors must see to it that they have all the facts about the incident before making any decision. This means that they must consult all possible sources of information (security cameras, witnesses, legal professionals, mental health experts, etc.) and document them for future proceedings.
Engage in impartial decision-making processes
Should the bully be verified to have committed a violation against safe work policies, managers are obliged to impose the appropriate sanctions. Multiple solutions must also be presented to the conflicting parties with the rights and welfare of the victim in mind. A strong and clear message of convictions is necessary for proving that there is zero-tolerance for bullying in the workplace.
Offer social and emotional support to the victim
The victim’s fears and anxieties do not end at seeing their bullies pay their dues. Ongoing support is needed until they feel safe being in the workplace again. Managers can tap mental health experts for counselling services or coordinate efforts with the affected employee’s colleagues for continuous psychosocial support.
Of all people in the workplace, managers and supervisors have the most authority in reprimanding bullying behaviors and extending technical support to victims of bullying. Thus, they must receive the appropriate training to handle such cases professionally.
This is where we come to help you.
At WHS & Training Compliance Solutions, we offer online and onsite Bullying and Harassment where we educate managers and supervisors on how to implement safe work policies and perform legal actions against bullying.
This training can be in a video conference method or online study, so it’s accessible to a wider audience. Visit E-learning WHS training to learn more about online training service or call 07 5499 2406 for a consultation with our training experts.
They’ll be happy to receive you on the other line.