Agrijobs Blog

Bullying for employees - Article Image

Bullying for employees


Thursday, June 13, 2019

Define bullying – what is it?

Oxford dictionary:

“A person who uses strength or influence to harm or intimidate those who are weaker: he is a rantingdomineering bully

verb (bulliesbullyingbullied)

Use superior strength or influence to intimidate (someone), typically to force them to do something:a local man was bullied into helping them”


Here are some real life examples that have come to light lately and that we thought would define bullying better.

Being shouted at work by the CEO and being told that you will be sued if you take this new job even though it in no way, shape or form is in breach of your employment contract. The MD then tells you that you misunderstood – the CEO was just being “passionate”. Is the CEO “rantingdomineering bully?”


Having your current employer call up your new employer (after you have resigned and had the name of your new employer harangued out of you) and saying “Hey, I wouldn’t hire them if I were you, they’re a shyte employee” while at the same time counter offering you.

Receiving threatening legal letters from your ex-employer saying they will sue you, saying that you are in breach and can’t work in your industry etc under false pretences – just having a laugh at your professional expense and making your life stressful for no legal, human or valid reason. These people really found their inner a-se hole that day.

Screaming down the phone at someone who has resigned and saying they do not have a bullying problem. You try to tell them you resigned and that the bullying problem is top down – and the person keeps screaming at you saying “We do not have a bullying problem”!! Is this person “rantingdomineering bully?”


Tearing up a Resignation letter and throwing it back at you and saying I don’t accept it

Changing your job-description and then performance manage you after you’ve resigned – no jokes -this happened.

Telling you you won’t get paid your benefits (which you are entitled to, ie Super, holiday pay owing etc) because you have resigned and it’s just tough luck – this from the Executive GM

Moving your work-station to the naughty corner, ie right outside the CEO’s office if you have not achieved your KPI’s.

Threatening your professional registration with AHPRA.

And if you think surely the above wouldn’t happen in this day and age, it did, it is and it’s all happening at one employer. And why is it being allowed to happen?

Because once someone leaves such a toxic environment, they are so glad to be out of there that they just want to leave it behind?

Why you ask do so many people not take things further? Fear – fear of this large employer suing them, fear of not having the money to take them on, fear of being black-listed in the industry because they have no problems bad-mouthing you as a “trouble-maker”.

So what can do you?

It depends on whether or not you are still employed with the employer where the abuse occurred / is occurring.

Contact the Fair Work Commission

Contact the Human Rights Commission

Contact your local WorkCover authority

Contact a law-firm and try to get them to represent you (are you able to afford this?)

Contact the media and get someone to listen to you

Unfortunately, none of the above work greatly well if you are not willing to take an employer on head-on because you fear them. What do you have to fear you ask? A LOT! Your future career is on the line.

So the conundrum continues – what can you do? Well, apparently not much else! So this is a big problem that needs a comprehensive, statutory resolution that is long overdue. The time for talk is over, time for real-world solutions is here now.

The whole industry knows who this employer is! People have contacted all the above bodies and guess who did what? Nobody did anything because people are in fear of their name being released to this employer as the person who made their complaint because they’ve seen what this employer does to people who complain about them.

Over to you government / media / WorkCover / Fair Work Commission / Human Rights Commission / Legal team. – we’ve done our best and this is an industry wide shame that everyone who does nothing about is complicit in.

When will this stop and be taken seriously? Maybe when someone self-harms?