Is it possible not to be aware that you are being taken advantage of? Absolutely. Recently, I bumped into a friend who has started his first job three years ago. For three years, he has been tasked to run simple errands, passed out for notable projects and even missed out on promotion opportunities. He wasn’t aware that he was singled out until one of his newer and younger peers took pity on him and told him in confidence that he has been “shelved away” by their department head. Only then, he realised that all those missed opportunities are deliberate and immediately walked away from such malicious environment.

Today, he is happier at another company with peers and management alike showing their appreciation for his work.

Here are some indications that you might be taken for a ride at work.

Startup Stock Photos

More Work
You seem to have endless work, all needed to be completed since yesterday and your boss seems to like to pile last minute work at 5.55pm on your desk, while your teammates happily packing up at 5.30pm, getting ready for the commute home.


Pass Away for Promotion
Time and time again, you seems to pass away from promotion although you know that your work is among the best in the department. Even the slacker in your team who has hired barely 6 months ago, managed to score a decent pay raise while you have to make do with a 3% incremental raise.


Compare Your Peers
Your peers enjoy swaying into work at 9.25am while your boss screams at you for being unpunctual for being late for 1 minute due to massive train strike. You always get call back to the office for overtime on Sundays by your boss, while you never seem to see your colleagues needing to contribute to the same hours as you. Your team mates get more prestigious projects like business trips to Paris and London, flying on business class while you are sent to Zimbabwe and Timbuktu on economy cattle class.


Mediocre Appraisal
Despite all the above that you have endured for more than 2 years, you still get a barely average appraisal with a non-committal response from your superior. He never gives you proper directions or even advice on how and where you can better yourself. When you pursued, he can only comment that you need to do better.


Recognise It Can be Anyone
Don’t despair! It can happen to anyone. Not just you. Being singled out within a team or a department calls out on unfair practices and you should seek to have a long chat with your superiors on how you feel. Or approach your HR if you feel unjust.

Have you encounter such incidents before? Got better tips? You’re welcome to share your thoughts in the comments below!

14 replies on “Are you being bullied?

  1. Wow, it exactly describes how I felt the last 4 years of my life. Finally, I realized the only way out of bullying is to put your trust in yourself.. Some people will only try and put you down, no matter how much you do for them. Have trust in yourself and your abilities enough so that no one can take advantage from you… If you can’t fight, then take a flight, it will save you from disasters.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Somehow I have ended up in a rather disappointing work environment. I knew somewhat what the possibilities were because I was going to work with a few dubious people that I worked with before in another location. The wild card was a different venue but it did not seem to matter.

    Why did I do it?

    A promotion. A different set of work experiences. Basically, just something to add to a resume. I am already planning my exit as we speak. Sure it is a downer because you want to improve things but some people do not want improvement and they do not want change. Guess what?? Some other business welcomes it.

    My advice is to just get out or do something to gain something and then get out. There are countless jobs out there really unless you live in a town of 5 people. Do not undersell yourself.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Well meaning wisdom. At least, you had your eyes wide open and trying scoot as soon as you realized this situation is not working out for you. Many people endure and endure, giving themselves false hopes that perhaps tomorrow will be better. It is one thing to motivate yourself and another to let others walk all over you.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. From a management perspective, it is almost a comedy of how to not operate a company. The executive offices are pushing HR to create slogans, committees, and put out surveys to make the environment wonderful. Then at ground level, COOs and other members of management are alienating employees and crushing motivation with their old school mentality of trying to make something so basic as working with guests into being like the KGB.

        I have tried to offer suggestions to my resorts president and he never responded that he even read it. I take screen shots of my e-mail…I get more e-mails telling me how full the compactors are than work direction or more importantly; vital statistics or news of upcoming events.

        Oh well…They might learn one day. I will be working for their competition though.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. You have done what you think is needed to be done. Sometimes a company or its culture is not the best fit for one, it’s like squeezing a square peg into a round hole, no matter how hard you push, it will never fit and end up making everyone miserable. I always believe in win win situation, whether it is working for someone or getting someone to work with you, there should be a mutual goal oriented direction so everyone is happy. I’ll hate to go to work where everyday I have to drag my feet out of the door. That’s just not me and not the life I want.

          Liked by 1 person

  3. Some of these signs come very subtly of course so it can take a while to notice. I used to work for a very big company and time and time again my performance review was good, yet not amazing, although I personally felt I have exceeded my targets and my performance has been exceptional in comparison to my peers. That’s life. If you are not appreciate in one place, move to place where you are. Good article.

    Liked by 1 person

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