Beyondblue CEO Kate Carnell used the National Day of Action Against Bullying and Violence on Friday to appeal to all Australians to think about how they can take action against bullying.
Carnell said people should follow the mantra of “If you see it, call it” to ensure bullies everywhere know their behaviour is unacceptable.
The National Day of Action Against Bullying and Violence was organised by Australian education authorities and saw schools across the country participate in order to strengthen the message that bullying and violence are never ok. The message is also an important one for the workplace, and if leaders do not take a stand against bullying, it could reinforce the idea that such behaviour is ok.
“It doesn’t matter if it’s in the workplace, at school or online, any form of bullying is unacceptable,” Carnell said. “Bullying is a major cause of stress which, if it continues for a long-time, can lead to depression and anxiety. It can do real damage to people’s lives which is why we all have a responsibility to speak up and stop it where we can,” she said.
Recent figures by UMR Research revealed a staggering one in three workers have been bullied at work, and over half of them are the victim of persistent office gossip or malicious rumours. Micro managers breathing down employee's necks are a major complaint, with 57% reporting that they have been unfairly micromanaged at some point in their careers. In addition, ‘stolen thunder’, being blamed for other worker's mistakes’, ‘verbal abuse’ and ‘unjustified criticism’ were the main complaints of Australian workers.
In this study, co-workers were found to be the most common culprits, responsible for some 53% of bullying cases, followed by managers at 47%, supervisors at 36% and business owners at 16%.