There are many types of harassment in the workplace; one of the main types being verbal abuse. What constitutes something as verbal abuse? The fact is, any language that impedes maintaining a professional rapport in the office or within individuals due to intimidation, belittling, hurtful language, or mental and emotional isolation.
The most common type of workplace abuse derives from an abuser who has a “higher standing” or is a “veteran” within the company or institution. The abuser usually creates their own universe where he or she must abuse or put someone down in order to feel better about him or herself. It is not uncommon for an abuser to have had a rough or abusive childhood. For abusers, it is easier for to hide how he or she feels inside with distractingly abusive behavior. The abuser usually wants empathy and respect from the victim and feels he or she can achieve this by forceful means and without having to develop a genuine relationship with the other.
An abusive relationship is usually a confusing scenario for the victim. He or she is usually unaware of what kind of life the abuser faced as a child or prior to his or her current employment. Most professionals would like to maintain a equal relationship with his or her coworker, supervisor, or other work-related contact. He or she may never feel completely adequate at his or her work, alienated from the abuser as well as other coworkers, emotionally stressed, or even feel compelled to quit. Coworkers may inadvertently encourage these feelings if they have never personally felt the same and express to the victim that he or she may be exaggerating or trying to create “drama” in the workplace.
Signs of Verbal Abuse in the Workplace:
– Constant feeling of work inadequacy
– Being constantly ignored and treated differently
– Sarcastic remarks with the intent of bringing someone down
– Feeling alienated from others in the workplace
– Use of inappropriate or derogatory language
– Supervisors using his or her authority in an improper manner
– Coworkers attempting to overstep their boundaries with condescending words
– Performance critiques discussed in public work settings
– Any situation that hinders developing or maintaining a professional relationship with someone