Bullying and harassment are defined as any repeated, unwanted and unreasonable behaviour that makes someone feel intimidated, degraded, humiliated or offended. Bullying should never be taken lightly. It is incredibly serious.

In Australia, there are national and state-based laws that apply to bullying and harassment.  Fair Work includes the following types of behaviour in its definition of bullying behaviour:

  • Aggression or intimidation
  • Teasing, practical jokes or ‘initiation ceremonies’
  • Spreading of malicious rumours
  • Pressuring someone to behave inappropriately
  • Excluding someone from work or work-related social events, or
  • Unreasonable work expectations (including offering too little work and work that is below someone’s skill level.)

It is important, though, that as a leader you appreciate bullying does not include dealing with poor performance or addressing the poor behaviour.