What happens to bullies when they grow up and get jobs? Civility doesn’t automatically develop in a bully simply because he or she gets older. Bullying is learned behavior; therefore a bully often needs support and coaching to abandon such bullying tactics.
Thirty-seven percent of American workers will experience bullying at work sometime in their lifetime, according to a study by Namie and Namie detailed inThe Bully at Work. In the past year, I conducted a study of more than 175 four-year colleges and universities to ask in-depth questions about workplace bullying in American higher education administration. Sixty-two percent of respondents stated they had been bullied or witnessed bullying in American higher education. This is 58 percent higher than the rate reported by the general workforce. Who knew that higher education is a tougher sector than most to find a civil place to work and fulfilling career?
My study confirmed that 16 percent of higher education professionals had left a job because of a bully. When the cost to replace a staff member is 150 percent of his or her salary (i.e. a $50,000 year job costs $75,000 to replace) the cost in turnover alone is staggering to higher education.