Combating Bullying and Harassment

and the adverse effect it has on business and success

It has been estimated that half the population has been bullied and that 20% of this bullying could constitute harassment, yet many businesses and organisations still appear to take the view that it “doesn’t happen here” and ignore the problem. This can be a costly and naive mistake.

A review of court judgments in England shows that Schools, Colleges, Councils, Limited Companies and Emergency Services alike have all had to make significant compensation payments and/or make apologies because bullying and harassment took place. In education the situation is so grave that the Government awarded a contract to the National Centre for Social Research to investigate through the “Homophobic Bullying in Schools project”.

Regardless of its source, bullying can have serious negative effects on employees and students alike including increased

  • Stress and anxiety
  • Absenteeism and low productivity
  • Lowered self-esteem and depression
  • Health related problems such as high blood pressure, digestive upset and insomnia
  • Trouble with relationships both at home and works due to stress over work

Workplace bullying is also bad for business, with companies suffering:

  • Increased staff turnover, wastage and churn
  • Reduced motivation, commitment, loyalty and productivity
  • Missed innovation, ideas and performance improvement suggestions
  • Damaged reputation leading to recruitment and turnover difficulties
  • Thousands of £’S lost in compensation payments

Bullying can be the result of an individual acting unilaterally or the result of company culture that inadvertently actually encourages this type of behaviour. Both situations are of concern but especially the latter, where management may not fully appreciate the impact their lack of awareness may be having on the business.

Few, if any, companies set out to purposefully support bullying but problems frequently develop when senior management and HR teams fail to take potential for problems seriously, for example by developing a culture of fault finding instead of solving problems. In such situations employees who make a case against bullies may even find that the bullying only gets worse and they have to either make the best of the situation or find different employment.

Because workplace bullying can be so devastating to all parties many business and organisations are increasing instigating zero-tolerance policies toward bullying and harassment and ensure staff, at all levels, receive refresher training annually.

This one day workshop provides just such training and in doing so offers practical and pragmatic advice on ways to prevent bullying and harassment, including cyber bullying. It also acts as a useful reminder to managers and HR personnel on the systems and procedures they need to have in place and the symptoms they need to look out for.

For Whom

This workshop is designed for HR, Operational Managers and Team Leaders from all types of business and organisation, including Commercial Business, Local Authorities, Schools, Colleges, Universities and Private Providers; it will also be of interest to Directors, Senior managers, Heads and Principles who have both ultimate responsibility and greatest influence when effecting change.

Aims and Objectives

Delegates attending will have a clearer understanding of the following:-

  • Bullying and Harassment – and its consequences
  • The rationale for, and detail of, the relevant clauses in the Equality Act 2010 and the Protection from Harassment Act 1997 as well as other related civil and criminal law statutes
  • Critical compliance issues for any organisation or company
  • Critical issues for particulartypesof organisation or company
  • How to develop and manage ‘Dignity at Work’ and Anti-Bullying policies and procedures
  • How to include external stakeholders and/or external providers of goods, facilities and services with service delivery agreements which embrace dignity at work protocols.
  • How to challenge unacceptable behaviour
  • Law enforcement frameworks
  • How to obtain further information and advice or help

< Content

1.Understanding Terms

  • Understanding the context – a look at how bullying and harassment is legally defined and how it presents itself using real case studies.
  • What constitutes an offence?
  • When does workplace banter turn into a case of bullying or harassment?
  • What is third-party harassment?
  • Personal and industrial injuries
  • Vicarious liability and the burden of proof

2. The Law

  • What is the purpose of the Public Equality Duty relating to harassment and bullying under the Equality Act 2010?
  • What are the offences created under the Protection from Harassment Act 1997 and the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994?
  • Where does Employment Law and the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974, fit in?
  • What about other aspects of the criminal law?
  • What about other aspects of employment law?
  • The ACAS statutory Code of Practice on Bullying and Harassment
  • Employers Rights and Responsibilities under the Law
  • Employees and Service User Rights and Responsibilities under the Law

3. Minimising Risk and Avoiding Prosecution

  • The 12 key principles for best practice for inclusion in all dignity and anti-bullying policies
  • Understanding and addressing four different types of behaviour

    • Passive
    • Aggressive
    • Assertive
    • Passive–Aggressive
  • Six proven techniques to help challenge unacceptable behaviour
  • External sources of information, help and support