Date of Conferral







Stephen Lifrak


Workplace bullying has gained widespread attention as contributing to the increase in organizational costs and the reduction in employee productivity. Organizations and human resource departments have conducted studies and developed prevention programs to address bullies, but few studies or programs have focused on the role of victims in the onset of bullying. This quantitative study examined the relationship between bullying victimization in the workplace, focusing on personality traits, specific problem solving, and a victim's locus of control belief. A sample (N = 94) of male and female college students completed the Negative Acts Questionnaire-Revised, Heppner's Problem-Solving Inventory, Levenson's Locus of Control Scale, and the NEO-5 Factor Inventory. Data were initially analyzed using a 2-tailed MANCOVA with subsequent ANOVAs. Results showed that victims and nonvictims of workplace bullying had significantly different instrument scores. Specifically, victims scored significantly higher than nonvictims in Neuroticism, Approach/ Avoidance, Personal Control, and Powerful Others, whereas nonvictims' scores were significantly higher than victims for Extroversion related to workplace bullying. This study may contribute to social change by identifying and addressing the behaviors of individuals who could become the victims of workplace bullying and how to address victimization through educational awareness and training, allowing victims to be more proactive and reducing the risk of being bullied. Future studies are recommended to examine the relationship between bullied victims who score high on problem-solving and their locus of control.