Experts say there is no one approach to ending or preventing cyberbullying. The most promising strategies generally fall into four major categories:
Changes to the organization and its culture. Strategies to help strengthen individual managers and leaders. Support services for the targets of bullying. Accountability measures to coach, counsel and discipline bullies.
“HR is usually the first point of contact for a complaint of bullying, and it is important for HR to help targets strategize about how to handle the bully’s negative behavior and guide them to available resources,” Daniel said.
Employees “need clear policies about what is acceptable and unacceptable behavior,” Bartlett added. “Educate and train staff and upper management,” about bullying and cyberbullying.And when there is a bullying issue in the workplace:
“In addition to taking steps to investigate and resolve the problem, [offer the person who is the target of the bullying] help with coping and stress management strategies; support via the company’s employee assistance program; and access to counseling, coaching and employee benefits,” Daniel said.
As for the bully, it’s important for HR and the employee’s manager to intervene early.
“With the help of an experienced coach, the research evidence suggests that is possible for abrasive [individuals] to overcome their personal limitations or blind spots—if they are personally willing to accept the fact that they need to change. However, when coaching and confronting the bully fail to change that person’s behavior, it is critical for the organization to ensure that the bully is held accountable for his or her misconduct and disciplined according to the organization’s policies,” Daniel said.
That may include termination.
To help prevent these situations from occurring, “Be proactive and ensure that there are clear policies in place to protect employees from bullying. But most importantly, if an employee comes to you with a complaint, listen carefully, take it seriously, and investigate the situation quickly and thoroughly,” Daniel said.
“One person really can make a difference. Be that person.”
Chosen excerpts by Job Market Monitor. Read the whole story at What HR Can Do About Cyberbullying in the Workplace