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Article
Publication date: 3 June 2020

Dianne Gardner, Maree Roche, Tim Bentley, Helena Cooper-Thomas, Bevan Catley, Stephen Teo and Linda Trenberth

Workplace bullying involves a power imbalance, and despite laws in New Zealand which prohibit discrimination on the grounds of gender, women remain under-represented in…

Abstract

Purpose

Workplace bullying involves a power imbalance, and despite laws in New Zealand which prohibit discrimination on the grounds of gender, women remain under-represented in top-level roles. The aim of the study was to examine whether gender and role (managerial/non-managerial) were related to the bullying experienced by women and men.

Design/methodology/approach

An online survey collected data from 991 (41%) men and 1,421 (59%) women. The survey provided a definition of bullying and asked participants whether they had been bullied at work. If they replied yes, then follow-up questions asked for the gender and role of the perpetrator.

Findings

Women were more likely than men to self-identify as having been bullied. Male employers, senior managers, middle managers, supervisor and peers bullied men and women about equally, whereas women bullied women far more than they bullied men. The largest group of bullies of women were female peers, who rarely bullied male peers, while male peers bullied both genders about equally. Female clients bullied female staff but almost never male staff; male clients bullied both men and women but the numbers were small.

Research limitations/implications

These data relied on self-report, and people may be reluctant to identify themselves as targets or may not recognize that the negative behaviours they have been facing amount to bullying. Qualitative data can help explore these issues from societal, organizational and policy perspectives.

Practical implications

While men and women may differ in how often they recognize or admit to having been bullied, the gendered nature of power in the workplace is well established and reinforced in the findings here. It is clear that organizational leaders, both male and female, need to understand gender and power imbalance and act as role models. Currently, the authors’ findings show that the behaviour of at least some of those at the top of New Zealand organizations needs to improve.

Social implications

The problem of bullying at work will not be easy to solve. The solutions lie, not with “fixing” individuals via training, stress management and well-being programmes but with effective systems, procedures, policies and leadership that recognize the power dynamics at work.

Originality/value

Little is known at present about the relationships between gender and bullying behaviour. The paper focusses on who bullies whom in the workplace and finds that men tend to bully both men and women while women tend to bully women. Importantly, the authors’ works suggest that instead of structural and organizational measures to manage bullying, greater initiatives to manage bullying need to consider how gender and power dynamics interact at work.

Details

International Journal of Manpower, vol. 41 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-7720

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 2 May 2019

Timothy Andrew Bentley, Stephen T. Teo, Bevan Catley, Kate Blackwood, Maree Roche and Michael P. O’Driscoll

The engagement and retention of older workers is a major concern for organisations and has been an increasing focus for human resource scholars internationally. Drawing on…

Abstract

Purpose

The engagement and retention of older workers is a major concern for organisations and has been an increasing focus for human resource scholars internationally. Drawing on social exchange theory (SET), the purpose of this paper is to examine the conditions under which retention and engagement of older workers could be enhanced, together with the potential for perceptions of age discrimination to negatively influence these outcomes.

Design/methodology/approach

The study surveyed a large sample of New Zealand workers aged 55 years and over from across 28 New Zealand organisations of varying size and from a wide range of industrial sectors. A moderated-mediation model was proposed to examine the relationship between perceived organisational support (POS) and intention to leave, the mediating effect of job engagement in this relationship, and the moderating influence of perceived age discrimination on this mediation.

Findings

While POS was negatively related to workers’ intention to quit, job engagement partially mediated this relationship. Age discrimination moderated this mediation. As perceived age discrimination increased, the mediation of job engagement was weakened as POS had less influence on the job engagement of older workers.

Research limitations/implications

Implications for human resource management practice include the importance of providing organisational support for older workers along with protections from age bias and discrimination.

Originality/value

The study is one of the first to apply SET to the context of older workers, and has extended the SET literature through its examination of the role of employee engagement as a mediator of this relationship, and how perceived age discrimination, as a negative aspect of the work environment, can negatively impact these relationships.

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Article
Publication date: 6 February 2017

Bevan Catley, Kate Blackwood, Darryl Forsyth, David Tappin and Tim Bentley

Current research provides an incomplete picture of the challenges facing human resource personnel (HRP) tasked with managing a workplace bullying complaint. The purpose of…

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Abstract

Purpose

Current research provides an incomplete picture of the challenges facing human resource personnel (HRP) tasked with managing a workplace bullying complaint. The purpose of this paper is to provide a holistic model of the complaint management process in order to advance the theorising of HRP’s role in this important process, and the challenges they face in undertaking it.

Design/methodology/approach

Cases of workplace bullying heard before the legal system were analysed – a novel data source in research on workplace bullying. Thematic analysis was undertaken on the case determinations to identify the challenges HRP faced that prevented the resolution of the complaint.

Findings

The analysis indicated two key phases in the complaints management process with five associated challenges. The first two challenges were related to HRP’s ability to assess the substance of the complaint. HRP’s ability or inability to “sort out” conflicting accounts and to follow the process saw the complaint follow one of three “resolution pathways”. Three further challenges were associated with HRP communicating the outcome to the complainant. Failure to overcome these challenges left the complainant aggrieved at the unfairness in which their complaint had been handled – triggering legal action.

Originality/value

This paper draws on a novel data source to provide a holistic model of the complaint management process related to workplace bullying which details the various components and challenges related to HRP throughout the process. Alongside advancing theory, this research has practical value for improving HR practice.

Details

Personnel Review, vol. 46 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0048-3486

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 1 October 2007

Trish Bradbury and Bevan Catley

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224

Abstract

Details

International Journal of Sports Marketing and Sponsorship, vol. 9 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1464-6668

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Article
Publication date: 1 January 2008

Bevan Catley

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498

Abstract

Details

Personnel Review, vol. 37 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0048-3486

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Article
Publication date: 26 April 2013

Helena Cooper‐Thomas, Dianne Gardner, Michael O'Driscoll, Bevan Catley, Tim Bentley and Linda Trenberth

The purpose of this paper is to examine the direct and buffering effects of three workplace contextual factors – constructive leadership, perceived organizational support…

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5755

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the direct and buffering effects of three workplace contextual factors – constructive leadership, perceived organizational support, and organizational anti‐bullying initiatives – on bullying and its relationships with relevant criteria. Further, the paper aims to investigate the effectiveness of organizational initiatives against bullying as perceived by targets and non‐targets.

Design/methodology/approach

Data were collected from 727 employees in nine New Zealand healthcare organizations. Of these, 133 employees were classified as bullied, as they had experienced at least two negative acts per week over the last six months.

Findings

Correlations revealed negative relationships between the three contextual work factors and bullying. Moderated regression showed that perceived organizational support buffered the relationship of bullying with self‐rated job performance, and that organizational initiatives against bullying buffered the relationship of bullying with both wellbeing and organizational commitment. Targets consistently gave lower ratings than non‐targets of the effectiveness of organizational initiatives to address bullying.

Originality/value

There is scant research on workplace factors that may reduce bullying and buffer its negative effects. This paper makes an original contribution in providing evidence of the importance of three contextual factors, and of buffering effects for perceived organizational support and organizational initiatives against bullying.

Details

Journal of Managerial Psychology, vol. 28 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0268-3946

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 12 June 2017

This paper aims to review the latest management developments across the globe and pinpoint practical implications from cutting-edge research and case studies.

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1886

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to review the latest management developments across the globe and pinpoint practical implications from cutting-edge research and case studies.

Design/methodology/approach

This briefing is prepared by an independent writer who adds their own impartial comments and places the articles in context.

Findings

A firm’s human resources (HR) department has a significant responsibility with regard to providing the workplace with a positive environment. Such a clearly demanding task becomes more difficult still when incidents of bullying occur. The damaging effects of workplace bullying are often widespread. Victims obviously bear most of the brunt. But negative consequences do not stop there. The risk of harm to witnesses can be considerable. And as hostility, tension and unease take hold, organizational performance will suffer accordingly. This makes it even more imperative for HR personnel (HRP) to resolve the issue as quickly as possible. Decisive action will reduce the possibility of such future instances. However, the trouble is that the HRP remain uncertain of the best approach to tackle accusations of workplace bullying.

Practical implications

The paper provides strategic insights and practical thinking that have influenced some of the world’s leading organizations.

Originality/value

The briefing saves busy executives and researchers hours of reading time by selecting only the very best, most pertinent information and presenting it in a condensed and easy-to-digest format.

Details

Human Resource Management International Digest, vol. 25 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0967-0734

Keywords

Content available
Book part
Publication date: 25 November 2016

Abstract

Details

The Aging Workforce Handbook
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78635-448-8

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Article
Publication date: 12 September 2016

Gail Kinman, Andrew James Clements and Jacqui Hart

The purpose of this paper is to examine the well-being of UK prison officers by utilising a benchmarking approach.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the well-being of UK prison officers by utilising a benchmarking approach.

Design/methodology/approach

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) Stress Indicator Tool is widely used in the UK to assess key psychosocial hazards in the workplace encompassing demands, control, support from managers and co-workers, relationship quality, role and change management. This study utilises this approach to examine the extent to which a sample of UK prison officers meets the HSE recommended minimum standards for the management of work-related well-being. Levels of mental health and job satisfaction in the sector are also assessed using measures with extensive occupational norms. The psychosocial hazards that make the strongest contribution to mental health and job satisfaction are also considered.

Findings

Respondents reported lower levels of well-being for all of the hazard categories than recommended. Moreover, mental health and job satisfaction were considerably poorer among prison officers than other occupational groups within the emergency and security services in the UK. Considerable variation was found in the psychosocial hazards that predicted mental health and job satisfaction.

Practical implications

The high levels of stressors and strains experienced by UK prison officers gives serious cause for concern. Priority areas for interventions to enhance well-being in the sector are considered and areas for future research discussed.

Originality/value

This study highlights the wide-ranging benefits of a benchmarking approach to investigate work-related stressors and strains at the sector level.

Details

International Journal of Workplace Health Management, vol. 9 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1753-8351

Keywords

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