The Mobbing Encyclopaedia
Welcome to Dr. Leymann´s homepage.
Information about Psychoterror in The Work place
© Heinz Leymann -
In this homepage you will find information that you need to know about
mobbing/bullying in the workplace and how badly it can affect anyone.
You will find a description of the mobbing concept.
What is meant by the term mobbing (or as certain scholars prefer to call
it: bullying)? If you would like to know more about it, just click the
hyperword mobbing concept and you will
find a description. After reading the file´s text, you can click
back to where you started from, in other words, to this file. Another file
presents the official definition of mobbing.
Illustrative case stories have been
selected to make it easier for you to understand the subject with both
your brain and your heart.
Since the beginning of the 80s, when I chose the term "mobbing",
a great many studies on mobbing
have taken place around the world in order to find out more about this
phenomenon. Most of these studies were carried out in the Scandinavian
countries. The most important study can be found in this homepage´s
literature list. These studies provided
good statistical information with
regard to the frequency with which mobbing occurs at workplaces in certain
Important findings concerning measures
will be presented. I will give examples of basic measures that must be
implemented in order to reform psychosocial work environments, in other
words, to prevent or to stop mobbing attacks and to rehabilitate
Unfortunately, but understandably, the problem leads to illness
from mobbing. I will describe the onset of this illness as precisely
as possible in order to be able to clearly account for how "victim"
status is reached. I will also provide a description based on my experiences
with patients and why and when their coping behavior begins to further
Together with colleagues, I developed an in-patient treatment program.
We had very good results in the rehabilitation of mobbing victims in a
specialized clinic which, unfortunately, today no longer exists, as the
Swedish health care system became quite irritated by our social-anamnestical
technique. This technique provided rich information concerning each case,
and shed light on illegal and quite often criminal activities to which
victims had been subjected, mainly by the employer, the labor union and
the health care system. It is of great importance that we describe the
boycott of the clinic by the Swedish health care system, as these
tendencies have also arisen in other countries. In fact, I arranged this
homepage mainly to be able to give a comprehensive description of the treatment
method for other professionals to use and for victims to request. I will
gladly offer any victim educational advice regarding what is called in
the USA "self science": a way for the victim to study
him- or herself. I will provide supervision by means of this homepage in
order to help you accomplish this goal. I also wish to offer to the victim
a kind of "buyer´s competence" as it is very confusing
to enter the market of psychologists, psychiatrists and other professionals.
However, my intention is also to provide these professional groups with
information via this homepage. My particular idea is to provide both groups
with the same information, as I believe in the democracy of knowledge that
can be achieved by making knowledge transparent. More health care should
be administered in that way.
If you are a victim, this homepage will help you back to a normal life.
I know this because of my experiences from working with about 1.300 patients,
former mobbing victims, who worked themselves out of a total social stop
in their lives. It can be done. Quite often the price of your success is
to rearrange and reshape a familiar and comfortable life situation into
something quite different. Completely destroyed careers very often cannot
be repaired to once again resemble that which once existed. My ambition
is to show you social techniques that will help you survive as a human
being with social competence.
This section deals, in other words, with the subject "back to
work.". One purpose of this homepage is to help you stabilize
again, both socially and psychologically. You will find a selection of
different measures for accomplishing this, even if you are still in a state
of shock or deep depression. I know that people want to come through this
devastating period, but quite often don't know how to do it and therefore
wind up in a state of hopelessness that may reach dangerous - even suicidal
- levels. I will also discuss survival techniques that can be used
when your environment threatens to sabotage your efforts to come back to
a richer social life.
Some files in this homepage describe, statistically, what it means to
be a mobbing victim. You will also find case histories here.
It is quite probable that you will find descriptions that remind you of
your own case. Even descriptions of the mobbers will be given. In
a longer section I will give my view of personality
theories as they are used in this area, although these theories
are hardly adequate descriptions with regard to mobbing in particular and
the victim´s experiences in general. However, there are other theories
within social psychology that may provide you with a certain understanding:
The attribution psychological theory describes why society very
often wants to blame the victim. Another theory about stigmatizing
describes the stereotypic development that marks the victim.
Much is known about the power structures at the workplace that
allow mobbing structures and mobbing situations to develop. This subject
will be followed up by educational programs: In collaboration
with several organizations, I have received permission to present their
internal anti-mobbing programs. I will also present the anti-mobbing
laws that have been legislated in, for example, Sweden.
Following this, organizational education and its goals will be
discussed. This section of my homepage targets personnel departments in
organizations rather than victims of mobbing, as they are not in a position
to bring about these developments within organizations. A victim should
never have to wait, suffering agony, for an organization to reform its
psychosocial work environment one fine day. This development takes
years. One area in this homepage is, therefore, directed towards how to
work with statistical inquiries in order to measure the quality
of the psychosocial work environment, and how to reform it.
I know, and research is showing this, that many victims suffer after
having received incorrect diagnoses, which is one of the real problems
that further victimizes the individual. Diagnoses
and situational analyses ("social anamnesis") can
be important steps in a rehabilitation program and will therefore be presented
in a special section. You will also find instructions in the files concerning
services and sales. Unfortunately, in order to keep this homepage
on the Internet, I have to generate some sales in order to raise funds
for the homepage. I wish you a successful rehabilitation. You are welcome
to take part in my Internet conference, when it starts during the
autumn of 1997.