“Learning to ‘Put Safety First’ gave me the courage to speak up when my colleagues were bullying a new employee.” ~Gary, a technology support team lead
We are helping to create cultures of respect and safety, thanks to Kidpower supporters like you. Gary’s story below shows how showing courage and knowing the words to say can help change a group’s culture from tolerating bullying to being respectful:
“I am ashamed to say that I used to join in with teasing people at work, especially if someone who was different joined our team. After all, I thought, it was ‘just a joke.’ Then my son got bullied at school; he was devastated and it broke my heart. In the Kidpower parent education program his school sponsored, I learned how to teach him to protect himself and to advocate for my child. And I realized that I was also being a bully.
Initially, I was afraid to do anything when my co-workers were teasing. And I felt awful because I didn’t know what to say and was afraid of their reactions. I read some Kidpower’s ‘Put Safety First’ Commitment articles with practical communication, boundaries, and adult leadership skills.
I spoke privately with each of my colleagues: ‘I know we thought we were just having fun – but I’ve realized from my son being bullied at school that we’re being bullies at work. We need to stop this kind of joking at other people’s expense.’ Now if someone starts teasing, I explain it’s against the values of this team because it’s hurtful. I think it’s helping our team work better together, and we still find ways to have fun, too.”
Here are 4 empowering resources that helped Gary get ready:
- Speaking Up About Putdowns
- Mean Adults? – 5 Skills to Stop Adult to Adult Bullying
- Fullpower Boundaries With People We Know
- How the ‘Boundary Bridge’ Helps to Avoid a Communication Breakdown
Bullying happens everywhere: from the school yard to the corporation office to the senior center. Practicing how to handle difficult conversations – and how to persist in the face of negative reactions – can make speaking up easier and more successful. Your generous donation will help us get these vital resources in schools, organizations, and the hands of individuals in many more places around the world.
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Published: December 28, 2019 | Last Updated: December 28, 2019