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HR Is Neither Human, Nor Are They a Resource

Cb OK, I'm going to have every single SHRM member down my throat if I don't explain my title pretty quickly.

I'm quickly becoming a fan of workplacebullying.org - an outstanding resource for those who are dealing with the extreme of office politics known as workplace bullying.  I take a vested interest in this topic because I was a target of bullying my first job out of college.  Both of the bullies eventually "met their waterloo" and I've been able to observe their roller-coaster careers with interest.  Both have zero credibility with those who now work with them, and those who formerly worked with and for them have extremely unfavorable things to say about them.

Regardless of my own past, I've found this site to be thought-provoking and articulate, especially with a recent post on HR's role in dealing with office politics.  In my afore-mentioned experience, I reached out to HR, who was not only unwilling to help me, but reported my issues to the superiors who were bullying me, just adding fuel to the fire.

A lot has changed in 20 years of evolving organizations... or has it?  Is Human Resources part of the solution or the problem?  After reading two sides of the argument and the corresponding comments, what do you think?  What positions have you observed from HR?  Do they assist with bullying or alleviate it?


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Carol Geil

Isn't this particularly timely considering the two recent investigations of bullying at the state departments of Elder Affairs and Beverages? For anyone who has ever been bullied, it's a small victory to see the bullies get their long overdue comeuppances. But the bigger issue is why prominent state employees in each of those departments had to go so far out on their respective limbs to get the proper attention focused on the wrong-doing. Swizdor in the Beverages division was on administrative leave for three months while the state investigated charges that HE bullied his boss, when it was actually legitimate whistleblowing, and Jeanne Yordi had to quit her job before someone listened to her complaints about the Elder Affairs department head. When are we going to start getting this right?

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