I’d worked in a private language school of almost 12 years and most of that time was spent as a DOS. A new school principal was hired. I made every effort to welcome her to the school. After about a week, it became apparent that things were not going to be easy with her but I tried to understand her. She started by telling me to send her an email of every conversation we had, every single conversation! That was fine. I started doing that. If I’m working on something that requires my full attention, I often put my earphones in to not get distracted by what’s going on around me. She told me I wasn’t allowed to do that. I stopped doing it. Then she decided that I had to get her permission to take a lunch break. I found that a little weird but agreed. Over the coming weeks and months she enforced so many unnecessary rules on my work activities and I agreed to every single one. She still wasn’t happy and decided that she wanted to have control of everything, including academic decisions. Things changed from being a relaxed, nice place to work to a dictatorship. No one was allowed any autonomy and no one was allowed to disagree with her. It was her way or no way. Eventually, I challenged her about it but failed to make her see how miserable everyone was. She was not going to change. After eight months of constantly being bullied by this woman, the stress was having an impact on my health and I started not being able to sleep.
After eight months of constantly being bullied by this woman, the stress was having an impact on my health and I started not being able to sleep.
I felt tearful most of the time I was in the school. So I left a job I loved. At the time I didn’t have another job to go to but it was better than having to put up with her behaviour every day. I learned afterwards that quite a few others were bullied out by her and the senior managers did absolutely nothing to support them.