Big bad bully
So as you’ve read in my diary in the February HRINZ HumanResources magazine, Meena has come to see me about her manager Bruce possibly bullying her.
I sat Meena down and asked her to explain exactly what had been happening.
Meena told me that over the last five months Bruce had had a number of meetings with her, and sometimes also with Guy who manages the buying team. Often during these meetings Bruce will swear at Meena and ask her what the ‘f’ing type of department she’s running.
Once they were discussing an issue where buying hadn’t brought enough of an item that marketing had run a campaign for. Meena had suggested that she had been told there was more stock than there was and Bruce started swearing at her that she needed to check these things and it was her fault.
In these meetings he often stood up and stood over her shouting at her. He also came into her office and wrote abusive things on her whiteboard then rubbed them off. He would also call her to meetings without any warning and ask her to present on something, then half way through will leave the room for 30 minutes. Meena doesn’t know if he’s coming back or not. If she leaves to find him later he will come and shout where is she, and if she stays he asks her what she is doing wasting time.
Meena feels she can’t win either way. She says that she gets upsets now about her job, dreads the meetings with Bruce and feels sick. She has lasted as long as she can because she knows Bruce is the MD’s golden boy.
After I’d taken all this down I check with Meena whether I can present this to the MD and reluctantly agrees.
So I book a meeting with him and let him read her statement.
He looks at me and says that Bruce is coming on a bit strong and he’ll have a chat to him, but that the behaviour gets results and he doesn’t consider it bullying.
What do I do now?
Post your advice as a comment below. In the February issue of the HumanResources magazine we’ll publish the best answers and see what Flora does.