142nd APHA Annual Meeting and Exposition

Annual Meeting Recordings are now available for purchase

Workplace bullying: Professional dominance and organizational deviance

142nd APHA Annual Meeting and Exposition (November 15 - November 19, 2014): http://www.apha.org/events-and-meetings/annual
Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Behjat A. Sharif, PhD, MCHES , Department of Public Health, California State University @ Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA
Scholarly discussion on workplace bullying has grown significantly. During the past decade, research has found that bullying acts are often subtle such as assigning excessive workloads, persistently criticizing performance, excessive monitoring, overly strict deadlines and withholding information. The wide range of bullying acts also includes overt behaviors such as sustained harassments, insult and violence. The aim can be to pressure and silence an employee who communicates differential treatments or mishandling of resources. The findings consistently report that workplace bullying adversely impacts the targets health.  Alarmingly, workplace bullying is prevalent as nearly 47% of employees in the USA reported experiencing bullying. Studies have suggested that workplace bullying leads to lower level of performance however perpetrators may use bullying to increase performance of employees.  Research on workplace diversity reveals the perpetrators’ underlying intentions can be exclusion of certain ethnic employees or gender.  Therefore, bullying overlaps discrimination and prejudice as minorities report bullying more than others.

This presentation provides current understanding of bullying construct, nature and source of bullying behaviors, and targets reactions to the mistreatments. The key contextual factors are presented including the role of leader-member exchange theory, group status as in or out of “the loop” and organizational culture. Relationship between exposure to bullying and its effects on targets’ performance, trust, coping styles, and beliefs of reciprocity is examined. Bullying is discussed with a focus on power disparities, its systematic nature as planned by the perpetrators to cause harm or negatively affect the target employee. In conclusion, strategies are suggested for prevention, effective interventions and research.

Learning Areas:

Administration, management, leadership
Public health or related organizational policy, standards, or other guidelines
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
Describe the prevalence of bullying at work Discuss causes and consequences of workplace bullying Describe strategies for practice and research on bullying at work

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: For over 20 years, I have been teaching courses in health education and health promotion and active with professional organizations including : Governing Council of APHA, Chair of the Resolution Committee of SOPHE, Invited member of SOPHE Open Society Commission, President of SOPHE (S. Cal), Chair of the National Awards Committee AHHE, Delegate with NCHEC, Serving on journal editorial boards, Guest editor and reviewer of manuscripts, Community services, local, national and international presentations and publications.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.