Karachi; Ahmed sat in his
cubical after meeting with his boss with the jumbled thoughts going around his
head, he felt low. Criticism from boss never seems to stop, despite his history
of achieving high objectives.
Unfortunately bulling is becoming a workplace issue. Workplace bullying is when
a person uses his power in an unjustifiable manner over his colleague or
sub-ordinates. The term is used interchangeably as a form of harassment. It’s an
unwanted conduct affecting the dignity of employee at workplace. It may be
related to age, sex, race, disability, religion, sexual orientation, nationality
or any personal characteristic of the individual. Unfortunately, coercive
leadership style is widely prevalent across business organizations and
subordinates can’t afford saying no to boss. Managers consider themselves as
assets and employees as liabilities. Moreover, unreasonable workload,
unrealistic deadlines and excessive monitoring of their work also as refers to
work place bulling.
Pakistani organizations are inherently follow bureaucratic structured where boss
has unquestionable power permitting workplace bullying and miss-use of power. In
addition to this, the societal norms considered to be paternalistic and follow
hierarchy where supervisor or boss enjoys unchallengeable power to his/her level
of comfort. Bullied subordinates hardly complain bearing in mind the dire
consequences with absence of organizational justice. Silence of the employees
leads workplace bullying and abuse of authority an ongoing practice. They are
threatened to loss of job, bonus or transfer. They believe that if they say ‘no’
to the manager or do not comply with the orders employees may get threatened to
A study showed that in Pakistan female employers are more likely to be bullied
by female bosses, while male employers are more likely to be bullied by male
bosses, it states that male employers are being bullied for their work
performances while women are bullied for personal and moral values.
Workplace bullying leads to adverse effects on employees such as; reduced
self-esteem at workplace, extreme distress, unsettled sleep, loss of focus and
depression. The drastic effects of workplace bullying increases turnover,
decline productivity and disturb physical health. While organization also has, a
high cost combined with decreased job contentment, higher absenteeism, lower
outcomes, lower commitment and increased turnover rate.
As per the article 37.e of the constitution of Islamic Republic of Pakistan, the
state shall “make provisions for securing just and humane conditions of work for
all”. As the Constitution says, everyone needs to be treated with dignity and
respect at the workplace. The fundamental question is how to make them effective
where bulling has become a part of the organizational culture.
Many organizations in Pakistan have recognized the prevalence of the issues but
they turn a deaf ear to the problems as it is constituent of our culture.
Organization in Pakistan are under huge political and some social pressure also
find difficulty to change this culture. On the other hand, study presents that
the growth of firm couldn’t be possible without the employees. So, they should
try to understand difficulties faced by the employees at the workplace. They
should care about the feelings, emotions and perceptions of employees because
human resource is the asset of the organization and effective management is the
key to success.
There is a need of making general legislation applicable at work. The workplace
bullying prevails in all organizations regardless of type and victims are also
free of gender, age and status. Since bullying is harmful to the physical and
psychological well being of victim that leads to increased sick time and
absenteeism. Provision of medical facility for all employees and special
counseling programmed should be arranged by the organizations. This may be
valuable and beneficial step to negate tense working environment.
Further the management in the organizations should conduct the training
regarding catering the issue. Awareness about the devastating effects of
workplace bullying should be spread. This will help to remove the virus of
workplace bullying that badly affects the employee productivity.