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What are the signs of workplace retaliation?

May 12, 2022 | Employment litigation

Every worker should feel safe and respected at the workplace. If this does not happen and your rights are violated, you can file a complaint against the responsible party with your employer or a higher authority.

When you file a formal complaint against your superiors or employer, they might try to get back at you. This is known as workplace retaliation, and it is illegal. So how do you tell if you are being retaliated against at work?

Subtle signs of workplace retaliation

Workplace retaliation can take multiple forms. Basically, any negative action taken by your superior or employer that is intended to deter you from pursuing your legal rights may be treated as retaliation. Here are important signs that you need to look out for if you suspect retaliation at work.

Sudden alienation

Alienating behavior from your colleagues, supervisor or employer after filing a complaint could be a sign of retaliation at work. Alienation can take the form of the management locking you out of departmental meetings you used to be part of, colleagues with whom you used to take lunch together keeping off your company or being kept in the dark during teambuilding events.

Excessive performance appraisals

Sometimes, the employer or supervisor may single you out for excessive negative reviews during performance appraisal. The idea would be to frustrate you out of the organization or ensure that you do not qualify for performance-based bonuses if your organization has such programs. If you have not experienced any disciplinary issue or change in productivity, yet you are negatively appraised, then you could be a victim of workplace retaliation.

It is your right to file a complaint if your rights are being trampled against at work. However, if the employer or supervisor decides to retaliate against you, then you deserve justice.