How can I rise above the level of the office bully?
May 5, 2010 2:11 PM Subscribe
I share an office with a bully, and things have come to a head. How do I keep cool and not resort to hollering?
posted by anonymous to work & money (38 answers total) 17 users marked this as a favorite
I work in academia, and share space with a lead investigator who has a reputation for being a tyrant and a loudmouthed bully. This person has office-political reasons to hate me that are entirely unrelated to me, and has had it in for me since I started. I've been here about a year. This person has no direct authority over me.
Put succinctly, this person takes every opportunity to yell and belittle me in front of others. This pisses me off, and my initial reaction is to defend myself by retaliating in kind. I do not want to seem an 'easy target'. Responding in this way is not good for me to move up and keep my good reputation in the workplace.
I have gone through appropriate channels, but I feel that despite whatever happens, this person is not going to change. Academia is strange this way. Despite my long career in academia, I have never experienced a coworker like this before -- maybe I'm lucky.
Therefore, I must learn some new skills for coping with this person. So I ask you, what are your ways of coping with assholes and bullies in the workplace? Remember, yelling and belittling is involved here, so the old standby of 'ignoring' is really not an option, and hasn't worked previously. I do have headphones, but this person does not stop until they get a response from me. Moving my workspace might be in my future, but not right now.