When you hear “bully,” you might think of the angry, aggressive jerks you’ve encountered. They’re the bullies that blame, demean, and insult. Draining your energy. Intimidating you. Making you want to react in ways you’d rather not.
Two other bully types create even more danger and damage.
When I wrote Beating the Workplace Bully, I identified the wounded rhino and the scorched earth arsonist as the worst.
Wounded rhinos can bring a workplace to a complete halt. Mean-spirited, forceful, and authoritarian, they attack with vengeance. Like their animal kingdom namesakes, they’re ill-tempered when disturbed, operate with calculated malevolence, and often inhabit key positions in IT, and other corner offices. Their goal? Domination.
When you tangle with them, you need to strike pre-emptively.
Scorched earth arsons pull out all the stops when playing a “heads I win, tails I win” game. Believing might equals right and lacking a conscience, they seek to take what they want from the target and then act to destroy the target’s reputation. It’s not enough for these cutthroat bullies to win, they need you to lose. Their goal? Elimination. If you tangle a Scorcher, don’t expect fairness. They threaten the worst until you give in, then walk all over you, rationalizing with the bully’s Catch-22, “anyone who lets me walk on him deserves what he gets.”
Have you tangled with either of these bullies, or the other five types, the silent grenade thrower, the shape-shifter, the angry, aggressive jerk, the narcissist, or the character assassin? If so, you’ll find answers in Beating the Workplace Bully: a tactical guide to taking charge, where I outline specific strategies for taking down each bully type, https://amzn.to/3msclOW. If you’ve already read it, please let me know your thoughts.
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