1. Gather information
Every time you feel bullied, keep records of what happened, how you felt, what was said, the time and date of the incident and if there were any witnesses present. Documenting it can help reduce the burden of trying to recall specific events or times.
2. Seek advice and support
Going through this alone is daunting so get support early and throughout the process. If you're being bullied, start by talking with a trusted work colleague, whānau or friend about what’s happening at work. They may be able to help you get a ‘sense check’ that what you
re experiencing is unreasonable behaviour. Your support person can also be there for you in meetings.
Other sources of advice include:
- a health and safety representative
- your human resources (HR) department
- your union representative
- your employee assistance programme
- Citizens Advice Bureau
- helplines such as Lifeline (free call on 0800 543 354).
3. Approach the other party if you feel you can
If you feel safe and confident doing so, try approaching the person who is bullying you and let them know that their behaviour is unwanted and unacceptable. If you're not sure about how to approach them, seek advice from a friend, colleague or manager. If this is stressful or if you don’t feel safe, you don’t need to approach the other party alone.
4. Submit a formal complaint
Businesses are obliged to take all complaints seriously. Find out what your organisation’s procedures are concerning bullying so you can follow the correct procedure when you make a complaint. There should also be information about what to expect once your complaint has been received.
5. Look after yourself
Bullying can take a toll on your health, wellbeing and relationships. It’s important to know how to look after yourself at this time and seek help from friends, whānau, colleagues or a health care professional. You may feel:
- anxious, stressed, tired, and burnt out
- helpless and like you've lost control
- negative about yourself or have low self-esteem
- concerned about your mental health
If you find you are struggling with your health and wellbeing at home, don’t hesitate to seek help or talk about it with a trusted whānau member of friend.