Earlier this year, Victoria Darragh, CEO of the UK’s Association – The Executive & Personal Assistants Association (EPAA) approached me about working in collaboration to produce some statistics around workplace bullying and Assistants.
I immediately agreed to work with her. I have been the victim of workplace bullying myself and it resulted in a nervous breakdown. It was one of the most stressful and disturbing periods of my working life and I truly believe it needs shining a light on. Bullying needs to be seen as totally unacceptable. We needed to start a conversation. She had been trying to get HR professionals to engage in the subject, without much success – they wanted facts.
Like sexism, racism, homophobia or domestic violence once were, this is a hidden epidemic but it is just as intolerable. The difference is that the conversations on most of these are in full swing and they are being tackled. Not so workplace bullying.
Too many businesses sweep it under the carpet and the bullies are allowed to continue. Often the victims are branded as troublesome or unstable or difficult. Many employess feel they have no form of redress and leave jobs that they have been passionate about, costing businesses huge amounts of money, simply because there is no process set up to deal with the problem.
Enter Bonnie Low Kramen; trainer, author and founder of the Speak Up Pledge, taken last year by thousands of Assistants who pledged to speak up either for themselves or for colleagues that they could see were being bullied.
Bonnie had heard we were pulling together this survey and was keen to support and share the survey and its results. Thank you Bonnie for your support both emotionally and financially.
Victoria obviously wanted UK statistics and we wanted a global picture so we have done both.
If you would like a copy of either our UK or our Global Version, please email [email protected] and we will be delighted to send it to you.
Thank you to the 3350 of you that took the time to answer our questions. The results aren’t pretty but we finally have what we need to prove our point and give the HR departments facts.
Let’s go change the world!