Scapegoats at Work: Taking the Bull's-eye Off Your Back

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Title Scapegoats at Work: Taking the Bull's-eye Off Your Back
Publication Type Book
Pub Year 2003
Authors Dyckman, J. M., & Cutler J. A.
Number of Pages 212
Publisher Greenwood Publishing Group
Keywords scapegoating
Abstract Scapegoating is the identification--then blaming and punishing--of individuals for problems that rightly belong to the larger organization. Dyckman and Cutler offer a survival guide for people affected by workplace scapegoating. They show us the social and psychological roots of scapegoating and explain how the individual and system act together to enable this human drama. This book shows how both individuals and the workplace system contribute to scapegoating. This book follows the career of the scapegoat and presents ways that the pattern can be interrupted. Strategies to help remove the bull's-eye include understanding how to recognize scapegoating and break behavioral patterns that make one an attractive target. Also provided is information for workers and managers who wish to develop cooperative means of dealing with individual differences, creating a work environment that is more humane and efficient. People who feel victimized by work-related scapegoating will find this book of great interest, as will professionals working in human resources or employee assistance programs. It will help managers who have problem employees and want to improve workflow, reduce turnover, and reduce workers' comp claims. This clear and concise compendium of examples, tips, and strategies will also appeal to mediators, shop stewards, union officials, psychotherapists, and occupational medicine specialists.
Notes scapegoating"There is almost always some truth to the accusations against a scapegoat, but many other sins are laid against their name that rightly belong elsewhere. Punishing or excluding the scapegoat serves to relieve the system of the need to examine the structural problems of the system and of all concerned to explore their own participation in the problem. The ability of scapegoating to provide simple apparent 'solutions' to complex problems is part of its power." (p. 11) scapegoating"We know from our experience working with patients who come into our practices with job stress, depression, and anxiety that scapegoating is a common problem in the workplace. Most workers who suffer from it are isolated and blame themselves as their managers and coworkers have blamed them. Sometimes a vague sense that 'it is not fair' is their only clue that there may be larger forces at work, institutional forces, workplace culture forces that operate like a powerful undertow on a seemingly quiet beach." (p. 3)
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