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Manage a bully employee

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in Workplace Communication,Workplace Conflict

When a bully employee dominates a meeting or other situation, here’s how to address the issue in the moment:

Don’t mimic the behavior. Don’t raise your voice or become aggressive or you’ll just encourage the bully to continue.

Maintain strong body language. Stand or sit tall, don’t fidget or wring your hands, breathe steady and speak with confidence. You want to show that you aren’t intimidated by the bully.

Stand your ground. When bullies try to force you to side with them or make an immediate decision, do so only if you are ready. If you need more time, say so in a firm manner. Example: “I need more information before I make a decision.”

Move on. Refocus the group on the topic or change directions. Do not let the bully interrupt or dominate the discussion. Say “We have already discussed that and moved on,” or “We’ve heard what you have to say, and now I want to hear what others have to say.” If the bully continues, excuse him or her from the meeting.

—Adapted from “Effectively Manage a Bully Employee,” Bud to Boss Blog, www.budtoboss.com.

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