Helping You Cope With & Stop

WORKPLACE BULLYING

RESPECT • CIVILITY • ACCOUNTABILITY

You’ve mustered the courage to say something. You think “I have finally stood up to the office bully”, and when you do, they have a harsh come-back. Are you prepared?

There will most likely be a come-back from most office bullies when they are confronted, so be ready. Remember, their motivation is self-preservation, not a mutual concern. Also note, if they operated from a secure base of high self worth, they would probably reach out to your statements with concern and compassion. Be aware of who what type of person you are dealing with.

You’ve said something…
There’s a come-back…
Now it’s your turn!
And you can use this short simple approach with all workplace bullies.

Less Is More

Here are three “Less Is More” short simple come-backs to help you deal with situations with office bullies.

  1. Office bullies who talk on and on, pressuring you to agree with them. You feel you have to say something, but you don’t want to give your power away by implying that you agree. Reply with“interesting” or “oh”- that’s all! This does not commit you.
  2. Office bullies who are rude with sarcasm, put downs or back-handed statements that are not necessarily direct, but harmfully subtle. You want to address it, so you say, “That seems direct” or “That seems harsh” or “That seems like a put-down to me”. The concept of using “That seems” highlights your perception only, and it is enough of a diffusing comment to confuse the power plan of most office bullies.
  3. Sometimes we feel we have to have a come-back in order to be powerful. Be silent and just stare back with confidence. This is the position of “that come-back doesn’t even deserve an acknowledgement”.

Bonus Tip:  Be the first to break eye contact. Be the first to walk away.

Question:
What is a come-back that you have used?

 

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9 responses to “Short Simple Come-Backs to Silence Workplace Bullying”

  1. Teresita Lacson says:

    Kudos to you for caring. We need a manager like you in the workplace and the bullies need to be removed from the workplace not good people like you who help the organization and prevent reputational risk. Take care and GOD bless and I wish you will stick around to defend those who have no voice. I was fired while trying to help, they felt threatened of my presence and knowledge about their bad behaviors. Keep up the good work..

  2. Eliza says:

    I have been bullied severely at my job working in state govt. This woman ended up getting promoted. Several people complained but I was her main scapegoat. most of these people are now gone. She has backed off quite significantly but I went through the ringer and I feel was financially and psychically damaged from this. The union was useless and EEO was useless. In retrospect, EEO was probably afraid of the agency being sued and was not on my side. It’s ironic that she’s the one that makes everyone take and sign the EEO class that’s held every year. I think there will be MAJOR upheaval in many institutions/agencies/companies when the anti-bullying law is truly passed and on equal footing as the EEO laws. but I guess one other thing i want to bring up is this starts in childhood. I was teased as a kid too. and my family of origin, i was the scapegoat. I have been researching narcissism and psychopathy and I truly believe my boss is a psychopath and my many members in my family are narcissists. the advice for dealing with narcissists is no contact. But just like food and dieting, one needs a job to support yourself. but I really love the comebacks and the more these people are exposed for who and what they are, the better. They hate to be exposed.

  3. Lstorybook1950@yahoo.com says:

    THERE IS no winning with this person. She is mean, controlling and vindictive. Has one person in office they love..same sex..weird…

  4. Diane says:

    I am the manager of a supervisor bully who is best friends with my boss! So I have been in the middle all these years when I have complained about the bully’s behavior. My boss defends her behavior and gives her accolades for her “tough” supervision of her subordinates. Our department has had a turnover rate well above normal over the years due to the disrespectful treatment of our bully. Almost everyone she comes into contact with in the workplace has come to me to complain and of course want something done about it. I talked to the manager of our human resources and they had never heard of the term bully in the workplace setting. HR indicated that six of the last eight people to leave have indicated the bully as the reason…but HR did not pass this information on to me! HR told me that staff who has left indicated that management knows about the behavior but does nothing about it. After ordering and reading your ebook, I arranged for a “Conquering the Bully Monster” training for staff so that they would be better equipped to deal with this behavior. It identified the bully behavior, but was light on giving staff the skills they need to deal effectively with the bully. I have had two staff come to talk to me since the training to complain about her. I have been a target of our bully, also, for years…putdowns in front of staff, bad behavior in meetings, going to my boss to reverse decisions I have made for the program, etc. I am nearing 60 years old so looking for an equitable position is a little iffy. Early retirement may be my only option as this situation has caused considerable stress and has affected my health. But, I am reluctant to leave my staff at the mercy of this bully. I have encouraged them to go to HR and even the union with their complaints. My next step is to share with staff the tools you offer in your ebook. Thank you for all the articles, the ebooks, and the blog to shed light on this little-understood workplace bully!

  5. Katie says:

    For over two years I’ve been verbally, emotionally, and psychologically pummeled by my Bully Boss. When I came into the job there were 5 other co-workers that openly detested this woman and gave me insight as to how to deal with her. When the movie “the devil wears prada” came out we knew we were in trouble because our boss made the boss in that movie look like a saint. Recently all of my colleagues moved onto better jobs and I am the last employee left under this tyrant. I finally went to HR with all of my emails and horrific phone calls that I’ve saved over the years, and nothing is happening. I have researched the topic of Workplace Bullying as far as I can – I even used the topic as my thesis paper for my Bachelors that I just obtained. I know that in most outcomes the victim will eventually quit and the boss will be commended for their “tough management” practices. This should be the other way around. The victim who has put everything on the line for their company (including their health) should be awarded and commended, and the bully boss should be thrown into exile. So my question is how can I make a stand if everyone else – including HR and my CEO are afraid of this woman suing them?

  6. Kathy says:

    I recently was “re-organized” out of my position as a Quality and Risk Management Director in healthcare because I wouldn’t put up with the bullying, shunning behavior of a couple of peers. I wrote an article in Compliance Today, a Healthcare Compliance Association journal published monthly. The article is in the August issue, Volume 10, Number 8, and titled, “Stopping lateral violence: Committing to your code of conduct. The Joint Commission for Accreditation came out in July with standards for healthcare entities who want to be or continue to be accredited, must address lateral violence issues in their code of conduct. The other change we need to see is to abolish the “Right to work” law, as employers use it to discriminate against workers. I was severely wronged and out of a job for four months because I was doing my job! I am a single mom in this horrible economy.I had to dip into my retirement savings to pay bills. Work place bullying is alive and active and we do need protective laws that prohibit employers from wrongfully terminating employees, fines to employers who do not address the issue of bullying, and eliminating the “right to work” laws so that wronged employees can hold the employer accountable. I have never been terminated from a job before and have always had great work evaluations, as I take pride in doing a job to the best of my ability. There was nothing I could do about this because their are no protective laws for employees.

  7. Anne says:

    My union has helped me get some financial aid due to the dire straits my family has suffered on top of the serious impact workplace bullying has had on me. The workplace bullying I suffered has had a rippling effect with too many details of serious negative impacts to list, effecting not only on me but also my children, my extended family and my friends. I’ll never know how it has impacted my coworkers because nobody , not even the union addressed this or acknowledged it was happening, even after I told them. Nobody did anything to help me or to stop it. It remained HIDDEN and a SECRET even when Union was told. The validation this site has provided has been priceless. However, it has only been since last night seeing an OPSEU President talk openly about workplace bullying at Confederation College(not where I’m employed)that I feel empowered to speak out. What a huge difference it makes to hear that the Union is speaking out on the local news channel and naming publicly what is really going on in so many work enviroments. I hope that light is shed on the work enviroment where I endured needless suffering. These employers (managers) need to be confronted and stopped!!!!Unfortunatley, because of their power- FEAR remains the only reason they get away with it!

  8. BARBARA WYATT says:

    I AM A NON-CERTIFIFED EMPLOYEE OF A TENNESSEE SCHOOL SYSTEM. I WAS THE RECEPTIONIST OF THE LARGEST ELEMENTARY SCHOOL IN MY COUNTY UNTIL I WAS DEMOTED TO AN EDUCATION ASSISTANT. IT WASN’T UNTIL I STARTED RESEARCHING MY SITUATION, THAT I DISCOVERED THAT I AM, IN FACT, BEING BULLIED. I AM THE “SUPERSTAR” OF OUR OFFICE/SCHOOL. OUR NEW PRINCIPAL CONSISTANTLY BERATED ME ALL YEAR LONG. I HAVE SUFFERED PHYSICALLY AND MENTALLY. I AM SURE THAT OUR BOARD POLICY DOES NOT CONTAIN ANYTHING REGARDING BULLYING IN THE WORKPLACE. I AM GRATEFUL FOR THIS WEBSITE. I FEEL I WILL PREPARED WHEN I RETURN IN AUGUST. THANKS BUNCHES!

  9. Heather says:

    I love this information that I keep getting! Excellent survival techniques!

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Valerie Cade, CSP is a Workplace Bullying Expert, Speaker and Author of "Bully Free at Work: What You Can Do To Stop Workplace Bullying Now!" which has been distributed in over 100 countries worldwide. For presentations and consulting on workplace bullying prevention and respectful workplace implementation, go to http://www.BullyFreeAtWork.com

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