Low level nastiness, suggestions on making it better?

(6 Posts)
Bigwuss Tue 11-Dec-12 18:55:23

There is someone who I work with who is being undermined constantly by others bitching behind her back and that nasty pack mentality you see with kids at school has set in.
She doesn't think she is being bullied, but her ability to influence others is being compromised. Anyone got any suggestions on approaches she can try to improve the relationships and make things better.

mrscrimbobash Tue 11-Dec-12 20:43:58

If she doesn't think she's being bullied then it's not her problem really.

If you're uncomfortable with how these people are talking about her then you should make them aware or take it up with your line manager.

Bigwuss Tue 11-Dec-12 21:11:05

But sometimes you know something isn't right and you want to nip it in the bud and deal with if you can before it comes full on bullying. I think that is where she is. I'm not sure what strategies she can start with and was looking for suggestions.

mrscrimbobash Tue 11-Dec-12 21:30:55

If it were me in her shoes, I would tell her to keep a note of any times that she is undermined etc and if something does happen that she should obviously keep calm and deal with it in a reasonable manner.

If she IS treated badly, she should take this to her line manager, but she can't go to her line manager because she is worried that something might happen.

(Well she could but I'd imagine that they'd be a bit weirded out by it.)

stowsettler Thu 13-Dec-12 13:05:28

I don't know exactly how this works (it's been a while since I read the Equality Act) but this new 2010 act brought in the concept of indirect discrimination. This is where someone feels uncomfortable if, for example, a female colleague is being spoken to suggestively or inappropriately by a male member of staff. The third party can bring a claim of indirect discrimination, even though they're not directly involved.
However I'm not sure how it works with regards to bullying (although I feel that it could be just as appropriate). I'd check out the Equality Act 2010 to be sure.
If it is indeed covered by indirect discrimination, it's probably enough (in theory) for you to raise it with a manager.
In reality however, your colleague may not appreciate you sticking your oar in. If it were me, I'd speak to her first and explain why you think there is a problem and how much it's bothering you. She may begin to think differently.

GarlicMushroomsYummy Thu 13-Dec-12 14:14:28

I think it is nice that you are a caring colleague. All you can do is continue to be supportive. She may be aware that there is a problem with bitching behind her back and she is choosing to ignore it. In some work places one person starts bitching and everyone else jumps on the bandwagon so they can be in with the 'in crowd' and I suppose that way, as far as they are concerned, they are not being bitched about themselves. It is pathetic how grown adults can behave like this. It is childish schoolground behaviour.

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