The Learning Seat team attended the annual Work 2.0 Expo & Conference in Sydney on October 24-25, and we had a chance to hear some great speakers and chat with delegates that attended.
Talking about workplace bullying
The Panlock Family, founders of the Brodie’s Law Foundation here in Victoria, spoke at the Seminar Theatre on Day 1 to a full house. Workplace bullying sadly hasn’t stopped, even though this is a serious issue, affecting workers everyday across Australia. We heard about how Brodie was tormented by fellow co-workers at a café where she worked, and how by the time her co-workers begin speak up about was happening to her at work, it was too late.
We learned a few things during this presentation:
- 1 out of 3 victims of workplace bullying do not go back to work. We saw this recently in the news, when it was reported that although more than $1 million has been paid out for workplace bullying, the victim now suffers from mental injury that ‘has rendered her unable to return to work.’
- Victims are often scared, or do not speak up about the bullying they’re facing at work. Similarly, if you see something at work, say something. Seeking advice from your human resources team or your manager can help. Safe Work Australia has a terrific guide to Dealing with Workplace Bullying, and Learning Seat offers some courses on workplace bullying as well.
If you can’t change the law, change the workplace
Victoria’s anti-bullying legislation, known as Brodie’s Law, mandates serious bullying a crime punishable by up to 10 years in jail, and is one of the few states that prosecutes for acts of bullying. Workers can also find assistance with workplace bullying by visiting the Fair Work Commission which deals with bullying at work claims. There is still lots of work to be done around changing laws in regards to bullying across Australia, which figureheads like the Panlocks are lobbying for. However, the interim solution is to look at the culture and behaviours in the workplace under a microscope and make a constructive change; find ways to change workplace behaviour for good.
Some resources about workplace bullying prevention:
- Upcoming Webinar: Keeping Your Employees & Brand Safe Over the Festive Season
- Webinar Recording: Hidden Costs of Workplace Bullying
- Lander & Rogers Case Law Report: Prevention is the best solution
- Can Unfriending a Work Colleague on Facebook Be Considered Bullying?