How to stop bullying in your team

 

This post is about how to stop bullying in your team when you’re the line manager responsible for that team. I’ve had a number of experiences working with this – working with bullying from people reporting to me, groups of people reporting to me, or people who work with my team and are bullying my team.

Read more below or watch the video.

 

It isn’t a pleasant experience to go through as a manager, and it’s the most difficult thing I’ve ever experienced as a manager. It is a very stressful personal experience.  One where you really need to have a structured framework to help you work through the situation to minimise the stress and maximise the opportunity to improve for your team.

The first part of this post is about how to identify bullying in your team and the second one will be about how do you actually go about stopping the bullying.

How to identify bullying in your team. 

If you suspect that there’s bullying in your team, I pretty much guarantee that there actually is.

The things to look for include:

  • Are people regularly crying in the office or around the office?
  • Do you have some people who are suddenly having a lot of extra sick leave or illnesses that seem completely out of character, out of norm, and don’t have really any explanation?
  • Do you find that people seem upset, but don’t want to talk about it? 
  • Do you find that you’ve got a small group of people that are regularly huddled together in and around the office space?
  • Do you repeatedly see one or two members of your team excluded from events, huddles or meetings? (Exclusion is a big way to identify bullying and is probably one of the favourite techniques of bullies to impact someone at work).
  • Do people have strange nicknames for other people in the team so that they can talk about them openly without being caught?
  • Do a small group of people repeatedly bring up issues about one person, which you have never witnessed yourself? (This is a real tactic of bullies is to target someone with made up stuff.)
  • Do one or two people in your team seem extremely stressed, panicky, second guessing themselves and losing confidence, with no real explanation? 
  • Have people come to you with complaints or concerns about those one or two people, about how one of those people are being treated? So often what you’ll find when people are bullying, other people actually will stand up for them. The person being bullied will often have had their confidence so destroyed that they won’t be able to raise the issue themselves and won’t be confident enough to talk through it because they’re afraid – they’re afraid of not being believed.
  • Have you had people make up provable lies about someone? 
  • Have people raised an issue about someone that seems completely out of character and cannot be proven? So again, making up myths, stories and lies to put someone down and exclude them and make them look bad in the workplace, is another favourite of bullies.
  • Has one or two people’s work performance slid recently and is there one person that everyone complains about?

The top things there are look for are people being excluded, put down, unsupported in the work place, made fun of.

How do you stop bullying once you’ve identified it? 

Get Your Boss’s Support

The first thing is, if you’re in a large organization, get the problem acknowledged by your boss and preferably your boss’ boss as well. The reason that I say that is I have gone about trying to deal with bullying in a work place without my boss’ support and had my boss actively support the people who are doing the bullying because they wanted to be part of the group. I can’t explain that, but it made it really difficult to deal with the bullying because what happens is that as soon as you start to deal with it, the bullies will go to your boss, or someone more senior, to get support and say that they’re being victimized by bullying. So you need to get ahead of that straight away, and I would actually say do not proceed with addressing bullying unless you have that support.

Create a Plan of Action

Work out a plan of action and ensure your HR department, if you’ve got a HR department, is informed and supportive and is very clearly saying what you can and can’t do. Once you’ve got that plan, start to enact it and what you’ll need to do is individually discuss the issues with each bully, making sure that you have a witness present. Ensure that all meetings are minuted and minutes are sent out to all the stakeholders. Ensure you have at least a weekly meeting to discuss with your boss what is happening, if not daily.

Also ensure you have a meeting with the person being bullied, but I will deal with that in a separate post, because that’s a whole different strategy.

The Bully Must Acknowledge the IMPACT of their behaviour

The key is, the bully must acknowledge the problem, the bully must accept the negative impact of their behaviour, the bully must apologise directly to that individual and preferably publicly as well with the team. The bully must commit to change, the bully must immediately demonstrate change.

Those are the things that you have to work on, and nothing is going to change until you have all of that in place.

If you’ve got a gang of bullies, split them up. They cannot sit together, preferably they shouldn’t be working together, you’ll have to rearrange assignments and projects, whatever it is, you need to make sure that you separate those people.

Remove the person being bullied from that group. So if there’s someone who’s sitting in a group, say a group of four, and three of them are bullying one person, that person you’ve got to get them away from that group because they’re basically in an unsafe situation, and nothing’s going to improve until you disperse this whole group and the whole culture that’s happening there, and separating people so they’re not sitting together is a very quick, simple way to do that.

Get support. 

Everyone involved, including yourself as the manager, is going to be going through an incredible amount of stress, and there’s probably been a lot of stress leading up to the bullying being dealt wtih. Make sure that you are getting regular counseling, coaching and support yourself. And I would recommend weekly counselling for yourself as a manager.

Time box it. 

No more than eight weeks to get change to happen before you go into formal performance management. When you’ve exhausted all avenues then you need to make sure that you are aware of all the paths in the HR policy and performance management to addressing the bullying, and make sure you have a HR person on board.

The other thing I would get is legal advice. If you can’t get it via your company, get independent legal advice on if the behaviour is in fact criminal, and what your role in this means from a legal perspective and what happens if you’re not able to stop it.

Make sure you document everything.

I really hope that helps people. This is my framework for stopping bullying. I have used it, it is effective, but it’s only effective if the bully acknowledges their behaviour.

What you need to remember about bullying is that, the key questions you need to ask yourself is, is your workplace safe, mentally, emotionally and physically? 

Is the person being bullied safe, and do they consider themselves safe? 

Questions to ask bullies are:

  • Does your behaviour create a safe place for everyone in the team?
  • What are you doing to make the workplace safe or not safe?
  • What behaviour will you stop immediately, and what will you do now to make sure that that person feels is 100% safe and they feel safe all the time?

That ends the lesson.

Good luck!

 

Please follow and like us:

How to get a promotion – A Promotion framework

How to get a promotion

1. Use a framework
2. Know Your Role
3. Identify Pathways
4. Create a current state assessment
5. Create a Plan
6. Be Flexible (get feedback)
7. Network
8. Have a contingency plan
9. Reflect
10. Know your timeframes

Want more?  Watch the 10 steps here and download the book for FREE.

 

Want to get ahead of the pack and stand in your pack? Want to lead the pack and get that promotion this year? Then book a complimentary consult today to get started. 

Want to get a promotion?

Use a framework
The best approach is to really have a structured framework that you’re working towards which you can read more in my book “I’m Ready Now! – A Guide for Getting a Promotion”.  This framework involved 10 steps to get that promotion.

Know Your Role
Know exactly what position or positions you’re going for and why you want to go for them.

Pathways
Identify your pathways to a promotion.

Is your company very focused on formal pathways where you need to go to several interviews or is it better to network away into a promotion or maybe a combination?

Have a look at the last two years of promotions into the roles that you want to go into and see how people have successfully got into those roles.

Don’t pursue pathways that are not proven to be ones that actually work for people to get into those jobs.

Current State Assessment
Do a current state assessment so look around your environment and work out who the key influencers, stakeholders, and decision makers are in the promotion process. Make sure that you’ve got those people onboard and working for you in terms of getting a promotion.

Create A Plan
The next thing is to do is actually create a plan. Sit down and work through a plan on how you’re actually going to spend your time working towards a promotion and give yourself a timeframe of three to six months and tasks that you’re going to pursue every single week to get there.

Be Flexible
The next step is to really monitor, revise, adapt your plan and check in. Check in weekly to see how your plan is going and if you’re progressing well to that plan. Also, give yourself a timeframe to say when you’re going to stop pursuing a promotion in your current department or workplace and to start looking outside your organisation.

Network
I also really recommend within that plan to make sure that you are doing some level of external networking outside your existing department or company so that you have different options open if a promotion does not become available to you in the timeframe you want so that you can pursue a promotion somewhere else.

Have a contingency plan
Have contingency options in place so you don’t get a promotion in six months you know what you’ll do instead?

What is your next strategy?

Reflection
If you do end up getting that promotion take some time to reflect, appreciate and take learnings on what you would do or repeat next time you’re going for a promotion.

Don’t Stop
The other tip I would give you is as soon as you get in your  next promotion, start working towards your next one.

Understand your timeframes
If you haven’t been working towards a promotion and now you’ve started it generally takes a minimum of 6 to 12 if not 18 months to make that promotion happen. Particularly if you have to do it through informal ways such as networking as these networks can take a long time to build.

Those are my top tips for getting a promotion. I hope they really help you progress. Good luck with your career and as I said I’m Beatrice Crocker. If you want more download the book for free. It really helps layout all this information in detail and I created it to help women progress because we don’t always get access to this information.

Want to work with me, book a complimentary consult today to get started.   

Please follow and like us:

4 actionable steps to build your confidence today

4 actionable steps to take to build confidence today 

1. Have Perspective. You’re not alone.
2. Do small things. What is one thing you can do today to increase your confidence?
3. Find an accidental mentor.
4. Adopt an enduring desire for change

Want more?

Click the picture to watch the back story.

Want to get ahead of the pack and stand in your power?

Want to lead your pack and get that promotion this year?

Want to take control and get results?

Want exclusive support?

Then book a complimentary consult today to get started.

Please follow and like us:

5 ways to get the respect you deserve in every meeting you run

1. Agree ways of working and behaving for every meeting
2. Keep the agenda narrow to 2-3 topics only
3. Keep the attendee list as small as possible
4. When people behave badly and refuse to change, remove them from the attendee list (and get instant respect from everyone else)
5. Ask for feedback

Want more?  Watch the back story by clicking the linked picture below or continue reading below.

Want to get ahead of the pack and stand in your power? Want to lead your pack and get that promotion this year? Then book a complimentary consult with me today to get started. 

The backstory:
I was recently running a series of meetings last year where behaviours were less than ideal. These included people talking over each other, not listening to each other, not respecting my role as chair, not respecting people who were presenting — so just talking over, interrupting, asking questions at the wrong time, making personal attacks, being very competitive, being very negative, and just outright rude behaviours.

As much as I could have blamed the people  for their “bad behaviours”  I took responsibility as the chair and really looked at what I could control within the meeting.

Why were things going so wrong?

What was contributing to the behaviours?

What had happened is that over many months the agenda had become bloated. The invite list had tripled and the attendees really had a different understanding what the meeting was for compared to myself or the original members of the meeting. This meant people came in confused, felt unheard, felt that their issues were undervalued. Because they weren’t given space on the agenda  they would fight to create that space.

So, I just took a step back and I said, “Well, I have to address these issues.”

What I did next is I relaunched the meeting and reframed the agenda of the meeting to be much narrower and clearer. I reduced the number of topics and agenda items from 12 to 3.   Set really strict times for each agenda item. And allowed specific time for Q & A and discussion and we would go around the room to make sure that everyone was heard and prompt them to ask questions or to get feedback.

So the meeting went from something that was very loose to something super-structured. And I did sort of hesitate a little bit on that, thinking that that was going to be too structured. I also reduced the invite list by about 70%.  And, obviously, that was controversial because some people didn’t want to be left out of the meeting. But for me the point of the meeting was to achieve certain objectives for which only certain people needed to attend to do so.

I also went and spoke individually to some of the people in the meeting and asked for their support for my role as chair and also to support better behaviours in the meeting of each other and themselves. I asked for respect when people were speaking, rather than talking over them and bringing up old war stories to attack people with.

Old stories don’t let us create a new story.

The most powerful thing I did was relaunch the forum and complete an exercise in that first forum on how do we want to feel and make others feel in our meeting. That really was about instilling responsibility for behaviour amongst everyone, not just myself as a chair or the leaders in the room but everyone who was attending.

The impact of these actions was really to take a ramshackle, aggressive meeting, where people felt anxious attending it, to a well run, respectful, enjoyable, easy meeting that people wanted to attend, an easy meeting for me to run, and a very easy meeting for people to speak up in.

And I had feedback from people saying, “I was beginning to feel anxious coming to that meeting, and now I feel like I really want to go to that meeting. And I’m not worried any more.”

Don’t be afraid to relaunch a meeting. Don’t be afraid to take people out of the meeting if they’re no longer suitable to attend, and the other thing I would say is take the time to discuss what behaviours you want in the meeting.

This is a great way to make everyone feel included, make everyone part of the story of that meeting, and also to take the temperature down if things are out of control.

I hope you found this really useful. My name is Beatrice Crocker, and I am the founder and lead coach of I’m Ready Now! Coaching and I am an executive coach that works with  women who work in traditionally male dominated fields or have reached that job level where there are very few women in the peer group.

I want you to find more purpose, meaning, leadership and growth in your career. I’m passionate about helping women to be seen living their true purpose and who want to radiantly embrace their lives, find more meaning, purpose, and growth in their career.

If you’d like to work with me, book a complimentary consult today to get started.   

Please follow and like us:

Beatrice’s Equality Day Dreams #5 – Making an important career decision is so easy

Can I be honest with you? I’m beginning to think my day dreams maybe a bit cynical.  When I read over this day dream that I wrote 5 months ago, it was part of a list of things I wish the workplace was vs wasn’t.

It shouldn’t be a dream that we are supported and progression is easy if we are ambitious and competent.  While writing my book and starting my life coaching business, every woman I have spoken to has talked about the challenge of finding out information on how to progress.

At work, a colleague came up to me (after reading my blog) and admitted she didn’t know that she was supposed to ask.  She has recently started working in Australia and asking wasn’t the custom in her previous country and in fact it might even have been deemed rude to ask.  People progressed once they met a benchmark and their manager would ask if they wanted to go up a level or take on a new role.

If you’re a manager, how transparent is it to your team how they progress? Are you over looking someone because they haven’t told you what they are interested in?  And, are you being overlooked because you are not asking?

One more story, recently a senior manager let me know that a role was available in his team and talked me through a series of names and I gave my thoughts.   I added an extra name to the list and we both agreed she’d be great for the role if she was interested.  In my gut, I thought she probably wasn’t.   Later, I asked her if she would be and let her know the role was available.  She surprised me by saying she was interested. So I said, “call him NOW and let him know NOW”.  She waited 5 days to speak to him (after another prompt from myself) and she missed out on the role.   The senior manager made a decision in 3 days.

If you hear of a role and you are interested, let the hiring manager know  straight away.  Don’t hesitate or let other work get in the way.

Just ask.

Please follow and like us:

“Sometimes good things fall apart so better things can fall together”

“Sometimes good things fall apart so better things can fall together”

When things are difficult, I often find it is because I am heading in the wrong direction.

Maybe I am pushing too hard to make a relationship something more than it can be, maybe my expectations are not realistic for the work I have asked to be performed, maybe I just thought one way of doing things was better than another and I was wrong.

Being able to pivot, change course and accept that there are better paths available to us, can make us into a better boss, friend, colleague, partner and neighbour.

What have you needed to pivot on lately to find a better path?
Please follow and like us:

Beatrice’s Equality Day Dreams #3 – they just asked me what job I wanted!

“The leadership team called me into their management meeting and said there were 3 roles available and I could pick anyone of them! I mean that was a really hard decision”

Said no women ever!

Am I right ?

But wouldn’t it be awesome if it happened.

For this to occur, a management team would need to assess people on :

  • their work performed,
  • make hiring decisions as a group and in a transparent manner,
  • the company would be in a high growth phase and have lots of new roles on offer,
  • the culture would be open and inclusive (not paternal and closed),
  • individual choice would be valued and there would be a lack of a reward systems in place for people feeling ‘owed’ positions (I’m not sure what the opposite of that be – something like people progress and are rewarded on company wide performance and objective measures, maybe?)

Now I’d love to hear from you, would you love this to happen and (is it possible) has this ever happened to you ?

Please follow and like us:

Kindness is Free

Always assume some one is trying their best.   

This post is inspired by Brene Brown’s work on vulnerability – I love all of her books!!

Would love to hear your thoughts….

How would your perception of your boss, direct reports and colleagues change if you assumed they were trying their best ?

Please follow and like us:

How to get a YES when you ask for promotion

I used to wait to be asked, now I ask to be promoted.  This has taken a huge mental and skill shift to take this approach. Some people around you may say this lacks integrity but how is waiting to be ‘discovered’ and holding yourself back, lacking integrity ?

People who want a recording contract – perform, compete on a talent show, run YouTube channels and busk.

People wanting a promotion do not wait, they stand out and they ask.

Timing

Ask when promotion, new jobs and opportunities are available. If there is a lull in available jobs, practice the following skills and techniques to boost your chance of the being no. 1 pick when jobs do come up again.

Credibility

Know your business case and know your ask  and work on making this visible to the ‘powers that be’.

Be the Obvious Choice

The right role is the easiest role – apply for and show interest in the roles that most easily match your ambition, skill sets and connections.

Visibility

Make your work visible and in demand (I will write more on this next month but for now, I have included some tips at the end of this post).

We want you!

Make your future leadership team and peers want you on their team!!

You know the ‘vibe’ is good when you start hearing things from senior management like:

“How do I find the right role for you, so you say yes”

“I NEED you on my team”

“We’re so glad you’re here”

“You’re wasted in that role, you should be doing XYZ role”

“They really have great THINGS to say about you”

Advocate

Find someone to advocate for you who is on hiring and promotion panels. This person could be influential with a potential sponsor or may hire directly as well.

In a hiring decision, who will recommend you if asked to provide an opinion on you?

Sponsor

Find someone that you would like to work for and talk to them about your ambitions. Apply for roles working with them and keep yourself and your work visible to this potential sponsor.

Who wants you on their team right now?

Influence

Make your ambition visible and known to people who are influential with hiring managers but may not be in formal positions of power. Talk through your business case and pitch and ask them for advice. Ask for help to gain a promotion.

What role do people see you in next?

Increase your visibility through celebration!

Celebrate successes and draw people into your success.

Celebrate team successes frequently and invite advocates and sponsors to these events.

Create a winning vibe !

Persevere!

Keep asking.

Keep asking.

Keep asking.

Repeat until you have it! (And then start working towards your next one!!)

 

Now I’d love to hear from you, how have you got a YES when you’ve asked for promotion ?

Please follow and like us:

One bad chapter does not mean your story is over

Don’t let a bad boss, a bad role or bad employer make you give up on your ambition!
Go for it anyway!
PS – and move on as quickly as possible, don’t linger in a bad role so long you lose your ambition or will to live.
PPS –  and if you have a bully for a boss, colleague or your direct reports are ganging up on you, just get the hell out of there and don’t look back!!
Now, I’d love to hear from you!
Have you ever had a ‘bad’ work experience and how did you overcome this?
Please follow and like us: