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As part of Men’s Health Week 2017, each day Triple M will put the spotlight on real issues facing men and give some real advice on how to make a difference. Today, lets talk workplace bullying.
Now as an adult, it’s easy to assume bullying is something we left behind in the school yard, but for too many adults it’s a daily reality still in the workplace.
Research conducted by Beyond Blue and the University of Wollongong has found half of all Australian workers experience bullying on the job. And take one guess who was found to be most at risk... young males, with limited support at work.
Mental health advocate Wayne Schwass says we too often lose sight of the fact our greatest resource and asset is people.
"People want to be valued, they'd like to be respected, they'd like to be appreciated, they'd like to be told they're doing a good job" he says, "unfortunately there are instances through all sorts of different businesses, that type of environment, that type of culture isn't existing."
What is bullying?
According to the Australian Human Rights Commission, workplace bullying is verbal, physical, social or psychological abuse by your employer, another person or group of people at work.
It’s a repeated, unreasonable behaviour towards worker that creates risk to health, safety. It may include verbal abuse and humiliation, social isolation, withholding information and spreading rumours.
Sadly, it can happen in any workplace, from offices to shops, cafes, restaurants, factories, community groups and government organisations. Workplace bullying can happen to volunteers, work experience students, interns, apprentices, casual and permanent employees.
Remember, some types of workplace bullying are also criminal offences.
What are the consequences?
Targets of bullying at work have a much higher risk of depression, anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder.
In 2010, the Productivity Commission also found bullying at work costs Aussie businesses between $6 billion and $36 billion a year in lost productivity.
How do we combat bullying?
We need to find courage, stand up and challenge the behaviour says Schwass.
"People may be aware something is happening, but they just don't have the courage or the confidence or the support around them in order to challenge that behaviour. It's only once you challenge that behaviour, can the behaviour change".
Anyone in need of support can call Lifeline on 13 11 14 or beyondblue on 1300 224 636.