Hidden Bias Causes Workplace Bullying

How Diversity and Inclusion Can Drive Down Hidden Bias

  Have you ever looked around your office and noticed that the managers are primarily men? The clerical workers are predominantly women? That you have very few people of color as employees? These observations may go unnoticed in the day-to-day work environment, but addressing these issues is the only way to change. What is Hidden Bias? It appears at the unconscious level based on upbringing, identity, culture, and mass media. It shapes the way you view people and how you behave towards them. These differences could include several characteristics, such as: height and weight, introversion and extroversion, marital status, disability status, foreign accents, hobbies and extracurricular activities, sexual identity, gender identity and race Hidden Bias Can Lead to a Tough Work Environment But how do these hidden biases lead to a non-diverse work environment? Think about the hiring process. While interviewing, one of the main objectives is for the two people to connect and see whether they would be a good fit in the company. This “connection,” though, is most easily achieved when discussing similarities. Perhaps the interviewer and interviewee attended the same university, are from the same hometown, or their kids play the same sport. This connection makes...

Continue reading
employee threats, Workplace bullying, bullying at work, Timothy Dimoff

7 Steps to Stop Workplace Bullying

Have you ever repeatedly experienced the following at work: Name-calling Shaming in public Intimidation Verbal abuse Pranks People leaving you out of conversations Managers giving you partial instructions or Having your work efforts sabotaged? If so, you’ve been bullied. Unfortunately, none of the behaviors listed above are illegal. According to the Workplace Bullying Institute (WBI), 19% of all US employees have been bullying victims. 61% of bullies are bosses, which correlates with the statistic that 65% of bullying victims are either fired or resign. Bullying, left unchecked, decreases workplace safety, increases absenteeism, and impacts employee morale. It creates a psychological power imbalance between the person doing the bullying and their target(s). Once the bully cements this imbalance, it’s virtually impossible to fix.   7 Action Steps to Stop a Bully Train employees to recognize bullying. Everyone in your organization needs to know what it looks like and what to do about it. There are two excellent books on the subject to get you started – Beating the Workplace Bully: A Tactical Guide to Taking Charge and Back Off! Your Kick-Ass Guide to Ending Bullying @ Work. If you experience bullying, speak up right away. Squash the behavior before it...

Continue reading
Timothy Dimoff - Electronic Surveillance at Work

The Fine Line Between Electronic Surveillance and Employee Privacy

With the advent of social media and new digital surveillance methods, it’s a brand-new world in terms of what you can and cannot do to monitor or investigate an employee. Before your employee privacy policy is forever compromised and your company culture is permanently damaged, it is up to you as an employer to weigh the pros and cons of employee electronic surveillance in the workplace. Productivity vs. Privacy The average America spends 2.5 hours per day on their mobile device(s). We take our smartphones to work, on vacation — basically, anywhere and everywhere with us. Staying connected is no longer a “nice to have”, but a “have to have” mindset. Take a moment and think back to the last time you left the house without your phone – it’s not a good feeling, am I right? However, our obsession with “staying connected” whether for personal or professional reasons has often compromised productivity in the workplace. This, among other reasons, has sparked the need to monitor employee activity. Today there are multiple electronic ways an organization can “keep an eye or ear” on their staff to address declines in productivity. These include: CCTV Legal wiretapping Cameras Digital video equipment...

Continue reading
Risky Employees Can Hurt Company Culture

Practical Guide to Spotting Risky Employees

Hiring is always a tricky situation. Unless the candidate is a friend, HR must take a lot on faith alone. There are definite red flags during the hiring process that present themselves and help HR spot risky employees. But what if there are no flags? Can the organization be confident that the employee is a beneficial addition to the team? Not always. In fact, someone may look great on paper, sound great during the interview and even perform well in the first couple of months. However, after the honeymoon phase is over, the “risky” employee may emerge out of the blue and wreak havoc on office morale and the overall company culture. Difficult Behaviors Once an employee “gets comfortable”, an alter ego may just emerge that isn’t so nice and productive. Difficult employees usually start their challenging behavior in innocent ways (e.g. harmless gossip in the lunchroom, letting others know they are in a “bad mood” today), but if allowed to go unchecked, these bad behaviors might just spiral out of control. Watch out for and note when an employee begins to show the following warning signs: Plays the blame game – it is always someone else’s mistake, they...

Continue reading
risky employees, Employee Burnout

Early Detection is Key to Combat Employee Burnout

Are you dealing with a once-enthusiastic, high functioning employee who barely makes it to work on time and has difficulty performing job duties? If so, the employee may be experiencing employee burnout. If ignored, employee burnout will affect productivity and the overall morale of the entire office. The key is to detect employee burnout before it infects other employees and spirals out of control. Where There’s Smoke, There’s Fire What is employee burnout? Just like the term implies, it can be compared to the life cycle of a fire. Think of it like a smoldering flame – once it catches fire, if not managed, the flame will burn out of control until it eventually burns itself out. This is bad news when applied to an employee’s day-to-day existence, not to mention the potential to “catch another employee on fire” in the process. According to Psychology Today, burnout is a sign of chronic stress, which is often experienced by high-functioning personality types. In the workplace, it presents itself in overworked employees who often lack management support or assistance due to staff deficiencies. In most cases, the employee themselves are to blame, by taking on too much responsibility and handling it...

Continue reading