You are protected from a hostile workplace in certain conditions. Your employer must take action to protect you from sexual harassment or address sexual harassment in the workplace. Discrimination is also not allowed in the workplace, and various discrimination types are illegal in each state. California actually has some of the most comprehensive discrimination laws protecting workers.
That being said, not all hostility in the workplace is illegal, which makes it difficult for some people who deal regularly with workplace bullies. According to OvercomingBullying.org, several types of bullies are common in the workplace. It identifies eight bully types, including the Constant Critic, who attacks the confidence of others through constant negative criticism.
Another common bully type is the Screaming Mimi. A loud and boisterous person, this bully berates people publicly and tries to shame and humiliate them in front of others. The Two-Headed Snake is identified as a two-faced person who gains your confidence and then uses information you share against you. The Gatekeeper uses whatever power he or she has to belittle or condescend to others.
One type of bully might not seem like a bully at first. They are the Attention Seekers. They make statements and act out just to get attention. If coworkers respond with attention, all is well. If enough attention isn’t garnered, the bully might get more aggressive.
These are just some of the bully types that are, on their own, not illegal. These types of bullying can become discrimination or harassment that is illegal, though. If you are facing a workplace bully, then consider seeking help from your boss or human resources. If you are facing illegal hostility in the workplace, consider seeking assistance from a legal professional.
Source: HR Morning, “Watch out for these 8 workplace bully personality types,” Tim Gould, accessed June 03, 2016