Workplace bullying and mobbing: Resources for HR

Earlier this spring, I promised a post about resources for human resources professionals who want to learn more about workplace bullying and mobbing and how to incorporate that knowledge into their organizational employee relations practices. As I’ve written here often, I am skeptical about HR’s role in preventing and responding to bullying and mobbing behaviors, given how many horrific stories I’ve witnessed and heard about from those who have experienced these forms of mistreatment. Nevertheless, excellent resources are available, and I’m happy to share some of them.

Drs. Gary and Ruth Namie have co-authored The Bully-Free Workplace: Stop Jerks, Weasels, and Snakes From Killing Your Organization (2011), an employer-oriented complement to their groundbreaking, worker-centered The Bully at Work (rev. ed. 2009). The Bully-Free Workplace sets out the Namies’ basic blueprint for employers that want to take workplace bullying seriously. In addition, the Namie’s Workplace Bullying Institute website includes a treasure trove of resources and services for employers.

Drs. Maureen Duffy and Len Sperry have written the most insightful book on workplace mobbing behaviors, Overcoming Mobbing: A Recovery Guide for Workplace Aggression and Bullying (2014). Their book is slanted toward employees, but it also includes significant advice for organizations that want to address mobbing behaviors.

Drs. Teresa Daniel and Gary Metcalf have co-authored Stop Bullying at Work: Strategies and Tools for HR, Legal, & Risk Management Professionals (2nd ed., 2016). Their helpful guidebook is published by the Society for Human Resource Management, and it provides the most insider, management-oriented perspective among the three books recommended here.

Several years ago, I worked with the American Psychological Association’s Center for Organizational Excellence to create a web page of resources for organizations that want learn more about workplace bullying. The page includes links to articles and websites, book lists, and a three-minute educational video (click above) that can be used in training programs.

3 responses

  1. I’m wondering whether any of these books deal with bullying in organisations relying on significant volunteer input?

  2. A dozen years ago while still employed at the Housing Authority of the City of Torrington, CT, I bought a book called The Bully at Work by Dr. Gary Namie and Dr. Ruth Namie. At the time I had read 2 articles published by the Waterbury Republican American that addressed the subject of work place bullying. The articles resonated with me so I began to study the social epidemic known as work place violence/work place bullying.
    The 6.5 years of experience I had is a classic text book example of work place bullying and mobbing by my former employer and co-workers. I was fiercely hated by my two female Supervisors/Executive Director who intentionally pitted my co-workers against me. I was set up for employment discharge by false allegations claiming I was a racist based on every legitimate complaint I made against my Latino/Puerto Rican Supervisor.
    I detailed my complaints of discrimination and retaliation to all the correct municipal, state and federal agencies who are supposed to enforce laws that make these actions illegal. My efforts and cries for help fell through every broken crack in the system. The professionals in the field of work place bullying suggest steps that I took to confront the problem but they also warned of the consequences when doing so.
    Again, I am a text book example of the gross negligence and failure to address the psychological/economic violence perpetuated by multiple government/human resources including AFSCME Council 4 union, Dept of Labor, EEOC, CT Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities and city, state and federal elected officials.
    I had successfully worked in the field of Human/Social Services in many capacities up until 2006 when my career, health, reputation, livelihood were intentionally shattered by the political hate crime I am still a victim/survivor and life time advocate of bringing this labor crisis to the forefront for necessary change.

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