Article written by Nardine Collier
Family Lawyer Cairns & Alice Springs
- behaving aggressively
- teasing or practical jokes
- pressuring someone to behave inappropriately
- excluding someone from work-related events or
- unreasonable work demands;
- Management action that isn’t carried out in a reasonable way.
Regardless of personal opinion, employers have an obligation to ensure they properly address allegations of bullying. Left unchecked, conflict like this in the workplace causes serious damage to the workplace environment.
The first step employers should take to address bullying in the workplace is to have good policies and procedures in place that everyone knows about and understands. For example, what behaviour does the workplace condone and what is considered inappropriate; how does a worker report an allegation of bullying and how will it be investigated?
Most importantly, a workplace must deal with any allegations of inappropriate bullying behaviour without delay and before it escalates into a major dispute. I suggest, the best way to do this is to have an independent person with the proper training, assess the situation and if appropriate to do so, mediate the dispute. This ensures confidentiality, and impartiality.
A properly conducted mediation can resolve the issue without great expense and improve the working environment.
Collier Family Law incorporates Workplace Legal Solutions, specialising in mediation of workplace disputes; but also drafting of policies and procedures and workplace investigations.