I see so I feel: Coping with workplace violence among victims and witnesses.


BACKGROUND Workplace violence is a serious concern for workers' mental health and well-being in high risk work sectors. OBJECTIVE This study examined victims' and witnesses' experiences after exposure to workplace violence, and the types of help they used to cope with the violent event. METHODS Workers (n = 211) from five different work sectors participated in our study. Multiple mediation analysis was used to investigate the indirect effects through psychological and work consequences on victims' versus witnesses' differential likelihood of using formal, paraformal and informal helping. RESULTS Results showed that workplace violence has detrimental effects on both victims and witnesses. Direct victims were more negatively affected psychologically and at work than witnesses. The indirect effect through psychological difficulty after experiencing workplace violence was significant in predicting formal helping. The indirect effect through reduced work functioning in predicting paraformal helping was also significant. No significant indirect effect was found in predicting informal helping. CONCLUSIONS Both victims and witnesses used multiple types of helping to cope with the violent event. This study has practical implications on management and clinical practices for better organizations of resources in helping victims and witnesses to cope with workplace violence.

DOI: 10.3233/WOR-172538

Cite this paper

@article{Zhou2017ISS, title={I see so I feel: Coping with workplace violence among victims and witnesses.}, author={Biru Zhou and Alain Marchand and St{\'e}phane Guay}, journal={Work}, year={2017}, volume={57 1}, pages={125-135} }