Almost everyone has encountered a difficult person in the
workplace. Sometimes, it's a hothead who erupts in anger with no
provocation or warning. Other times, it's a silent sulker whose
dark moods suck the life out of his entire team.
Princeton, N.J.-based market research firm Opinion Research
Corp. International/Integra Realty Resources Inc. conducted a
survey of 1,300 U.S. workers titled "Desk Rage in America: The Year
2000." Forty-two percent of respondents said yelling and verbal
abuse were issues in their workplaces, and 29 percent admitted to
yelling at co-workers. Furthermore, the Center for Aggression
Management in Winter Park, Fla., estimates there are 6 million
instances of employees being verbally threatened and 16 million
instances of employee harassment in the United States per year.
These common explosions of work rage and harassment, including
verbal abuse and threats, create a hostile work environment that
increases employee tardiness, absenteeism and turnover. Victims of
work rage also experience increased stress, which may lead to
hypertension, substance abuse and decreased productivity. These
negative outcomes can affect a business's bottom line.
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