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|Posted by John on January 9, 2015 at 5:40 PM||comments (0)|
Being very aggressively Bullied from the same Serial Work Place Bully for 10+ years
As some of you are aware, I have been very aggressively bullied from the same person for years. His first name is Mario. Long story short, we met and became friends when I moved to a new department at First Data Corp in around the year 2001 (before 911). A few years later he began his very aggressive style of Bullying. Day in and day out he constantly harassed me to the point where I began seeking help for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. I couldn't believe it when I was first diagnosed with this.
When I, to my surprise, first saw him at a new job located on Ericsson Drive in Warrendale PA I was totally shocked. It was like day ja view all over again. It was as if I was a Deer staring in the headlights. A lot of very bad memories kicked in. October 16, 2012 was my second day at my new job as a Tandem Consultant for Federated. Someone motioned me to stop my car, he calmly walked across the drive, turned around, while his friends from Westinghouse stood across the parking lot, looking at me laughing hysterically. As I mentioned earlier, it was as if I was a deer staring in the headlights. He walked ahead of me, carrying a gym bag, with his group. When he signed in at the Westinghouse Security desk, he made some snide remarks where everyone at the doorway just stood there and laughed, while looking in my direction. Again, I just looked very shocked and walked away.
Document Everything - Be specific
The bully continued to walk into the office, going to interviews, and continued to defame my character every chance he got.
I basically ignored him, with his horrific stares, thinking that my job was secure. I realize now that, that was a huge mistake.
I was meeting all the required work either on or ahead of schedule. My Boss even had told me that I was doing a great job. I was in seventh heaven. I honestly had no idea that with this horrible bully in my presence that my days were numbered.
My android anti-bullying apps
I don't mean to advertise my apps here but I just wanted to mention that I came up with the idea behind my android apps shortly after I had my meeting with my Employment Attorney (around May / June 2013). Rather than doing something negative such as going POSTAL, I had decided to devote the rest of my life doing positive things such as creating apps (focusing on doing something constructive) which can help others who find themselves in similar situations.
In the near future, I intend to make additional enhancements to both the paid and free versions of my apps. Such enhancements as added video capability.
A note to Remember
If you are being Bullied and you are having feelings of harming yourself or the BULLY, you should let others know your true feelings. People of all ages have been known to commit suicide or go postal because of bullying. It's not your fault you feel this way. It's better to get some help before you do something that you will regret. These apps also have an indicator set up to assist you in that task.
Ignoring private meetings
I ignored two very important private meetings.
1. One of the Security Guards visited my Boss. He gave me a really dirty look, then to my Boss that he needs to discuss something with him in private. They went into a conference room and talked for around a half hour. My Boss didn't say anything to me but I had a definite feeling it was about me. I Ignored everything and just didn't say anything.
2. One day on the way back from lunch, I ran into my Boss who was sitting right outside the lunch room area. He was there talking to someone who I later found out was the SR Director of HR. I overheard him say "no one with such a poor reputation deserves to be up there making 50 an hour." Then he quieted down as he took one look at me and left. I again basically ignored the whole thing. Another Huge Mistake.
Ignoring the BULLY
Another really huge mistake I made is with ignoring the Bully. This BULLY has impeccable timing. The modern architectural design of the building I was in had windows everywhere. It was like working in a glass house. Anyway here is a brief list of the type of Bullying activities I was confronted with on almost a daily basis.
When I was in meetings on the first floor, the Bully is standing right outside the window in the smoking area. At first his back is facing me, then he turns around with one of his horrible stares directed towards me. I know that there were others in the meeting who have noticed this. As usual, I ignored everything he did.
In the Halls
One time my Boss was escorting me to the other end of the building to an important meeting. On the way we passed a group of people who was escorting the Bully to an interview with our company. As we walked by, the Bully shakes his head and said " I can't believe you guys actually hired this guy" (meaning me). My Boss and I both heard that remark. Then he made another remark which made everyone laugh. My Boss said "do you know this guy?" I said I did, but as usual I was in a state of shock and didn't really say anything.
In the Lunch Room
This is a day I will never forget. I'm sitting in the main lunch room eating my meal and in walks in Mario (the bully). He looked at me and gave me his usual dirty looks. then sits down right in front of me with his back facing towards me. Then suddenly he turns right around and stairs at me while I'm eating my meal. He was staring at me and swinging his left arm while I was eating my meal. What I did was completely ignore him to the best of my ability. It was as if he wanted to start a fight right there in the lunch room. I continued ignoring him until I finished my meal. When I got up I walked by him I stared back at him and sat down in front of him. He was swearing and quietly saying that he was sorry.
I saw several people in the lunch room observing what was going on. To this day I don't know what kind of horrible lies he had been telling people but it must have been a beaut.
Beginning of my Final Week
On the beginning of what was to be my last week there I saw the Bully being escorted out of the building for the last time. I distinctly remember the Dialogue between the Bully, the Manager who was interviewing him at Westinghouse, and his friend who was with them when being escorted in and out of the building.
Bully: Mumbling something as he's walking out of the building.
Manager: "Friday is his last day"
Bully: "When do you want me to start?"
Manager: "I'll have to get back to you on that..."
Bully: yelling "WHAT DO YOU MEAN, YOU TOLD ME THAT I HAD THE JOB."
Manager: " we thank you,... I guess for alerting us about him. I wonder if you even know what you did?? If you weren't here he would still be working here. The truth is that your a big bully and I let you go because I just wanted to see what your capable of. You could have done this to any of my other staff members. I don't want you anywhere near the other members of my team . You just might be the worst Bully I have ever seen."
Bully's Friend: "Your a big Bully Mario, your a big Bully."
Manager: "Since your not an employee, you are no longer allowed to use our gym.
Bully's Friend: "Your a big Bully Mario, your a big Bully."
Bully: "I guess you were just testing me."
Bully: "OK". and then he turned to me and grinned at me, turned around and walked to his car..
The other two walked towards me while I was waiting for the elevator.
The three of us then walked into the elevator. On the way up I asked them if that was Mario.
They both said yes.
Then they got off at the third floor, their office, and the Manager was angry with the other employee, asking him if he knew that he was going to do this?
He hemmed and hawed, and ensured him that I wouldn't take any legal action.
I found out the hard way, what happens when you don't properly document this type of behavior. It was as if a horrible plague had swept through that building. He evidently had said things where it didn't really matter how good of a job I was doing. They just had to get rid of me. It was as simple as that.
On the following Friday I received a surprise email from the Consulting firm that I was employed with. It said to call them right away. I called them and the head hunter said that today was my last day. I was totally shocked!
Back to my original question
If I was more assertive, could I have saved my Contracting position? Most companies insist that they don't allow Bullying of any kind. But on occasion, Bullies get in and wreck total chaos As in with my situation.
I'm sure there is one question on anyone's mind. Why? What would this Bully have to gain by doing this? It’s simple. If he was applying for a position up there, he would not want me anywhere near where he's working. As I mentioned before, I know what he's capable of. If I saw him assault someone else up there, I might report him.
Another reason might be ego. He's one sick Son of a B and most likely gets a thrill over controlling and wrecking havoc with someone else's life.
Lessons Learned - be more aggressive
I should have been much more aggressive. I should have told everyone just how much of a Bully he really is and just what he is really doing. He bullies everyone at different levels and basically says what he needs to, to get others to do things for him. A perfect example is how he got a friend of his, a Project Manager and two security guards from Westinghouse to laugh at something about me. What was the big joke?
The thought of being more aggressive is very frightening to me, especially on my second day at a new employer. I'm not the aggressive type. But regardless, I should have spoken up and said something. If I had it together enough, I should have realized that on my second day, my future with that company was really on the line. If he was applying for a job up there, he did not want me there because I know all too well as to what he's really capable of.
Recommendation from a Prominent Employment Attorney
A Employment Attorney who is able to work in both Delaware and in Pennsylvania (Delaware is where the Bully is currently working) had explained to me that you must keep an accurate paper trail of all Bullying activity. Just keeping a notebook is not enough. You must send emails / text messages to those people who can come to my aid. Sending an email to someone in HR, to your immediate managers, or to anyone else who can come to your aid and support. Hopefully they can bring an end to it.
This would have been very hard for me since I was a "Consultant". I should have been up front with my manager and Sr staff members as to what was really going on. But besides discussing it, you must follow it up with an email that has a valid time stamp. I could also have sent these emails to the Senior HR person where he is currently working.
Don't ignore any private meetings
1. As soon as I saw the Security Guard giving me the eye, I should have immediately gotten up, gone over and told him about the Bully down stairs (in front of my manager). As I mentioned earlier, I'm not very assertive. But in the case of this Horrible Bully, I simply had no choice.
2. I should have opened up and told the Sr Director a brief history of my career and also include my experiences with the Bully. I bet he didn't know that I worked as a Consultant with my previous employer and after a 2 month extension I was hired Full time. I wouldn't be surprised if the Bully made a phone call.
I should NEVER have Ignored HIM
I've mentioned this before, if you put both of us in the same room, he immediately acts like he's going to start swinging. And in the Corporate world, it always seems to be "you two guys are fighting".. It never seems to be the bully harassing his target. For me, the fear of loosing my job comes to play. I should have contacted HR and discussed things with my Manager before things got out of hand.
I should have made it a point to discuss this bully at the meeting. If it was inappropriate to say something to the group, I should have said something to my Boss immediately after the meeting.
In the Hall
I should have introduced myself to the group. Then explain to the others as to what is really happening and just what this bully is doing. Confrontation could have caused him to act violently towards me.
In the Lunch Room
Even though he has the reputation of acting violent, I should not have ignored him. I should have said something and made some comments about his Bullying tactics.
Beginning of my Final Week
As soon as I noticed this discussion right outside the building, I should have taken immediate action and joined them. Made sure I had the names of the Security Guards, the Manager and the Bullies friend from Westinghouse. But all I did was stair at everyone while in a complete state of total shock.