26 Jan

Managing workplace bullying: Reviewed by Vee Howard-Jones

Managing workplace bullying: how to identify, respond to and manage bullying behavior in the workplace – Aryanne Oade
Reviewed by Vee Howard-Jones in Therapy Today, Nov 2010 (Vol.21 Issue 9)

Click book cover to buy this on Amazon

Click book cover to buy this on Amazon

This book does exactly what it says in the title. The reader is given practical step-by-step information and instructions on how to manage a myriad of situations that involve workplace bullying. Its author is a seasoned chartered psychologist, who runs her own coaching and development business and has delivered workshops and training events to businesses in the public and private sector. She draws on the experiences of her clients to produce some helpful case studies which give the reader opportunities to gauge how they might respond in a number of given circumstances. In this way the book is rather like a self-help learning tool.

The text is aimed at four groups: those with experience (current or past) of being bullied; those who line-manage someone who bullies; people who are close to someone who is being bullied; and those who witness bullying behaviour.

The reader is left in no doubt regarding Oade’s opinion of bullies in the workplace or otherwise. Whilst there is a helpful section that looks at the psychological motivations of bullying behaviour, there is little consideration for how bullies become who they are. Empathy for the bully and the bullied is a key ingredient if any kind of mediation and resolution of difficulties is going to occur.

Having said this, Oade aims to empower those who are experiencing bullying behaviour. She does this with crystal clear rhetoric and carefully considered potential outcomes. Enhancing self-esteem through confronting the bully is sensitively discussed.

The book is a practical well-structured, logical and pragmatic approach to the subject, which helps to affirm and normalise the experiences of those on the receiving end of bullying behaviour.

Vee Howard-Jones is Associate Director of Psychology, Counselling and Psychotherapy at the University of Salford.