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What to do when the big boss is a bully?

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in People Management,The HR Specialist Forum

The owner of our company has a fairly in-your-face, aggressive personality. I and lots of other staff can deal with him—that’s just his style. But several of our employees have complained recently that he’s acting worse and worse, and they’ve come to me accusing him of intimidating and bullying them. Who should I counsel? The boss, to tell him to lighten up? Or the employees, to tell them to get a thicker skin?—Designated Mediator

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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Ismael Tabije July 23, 2011 at 11:42 pm

I think it’s not an either-or mutually exclusive situation. Without knowing many of the details, I’d say based on what you have written that you should try to counsel both sides — for the boss to lighten up a bit and for the employees to be more accepting of his behavior (he’s the owner, you see).

If worse comes to worst, those employees who can’t stomach it anymore always have the option to find a better workplace elsewhere.


Yolie October 27, 2010 at 9:03 am

A good Prevention of Harassment program for all employees including the boss. Obviously he does not understand how his behavior affects others.


Elizabeth September 21, 2010 at 4:28 pm

You sign your name as Designated Mediator, but what is your actual job? If you are self-designated, or otherwise have no authority, then trying to counsel the boss or your coworkers is only good to lead to a bad place.


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