chapter  5
20 Pages

Organisational Effects of Workplace Bullying

ByHelge Hoel, Michael J. Sheehan, Cary L. Cooper, Ståle Einarsen

In February 2007, Gerd Liv Valla, frequently described as Norway’s most powerful person, had to step down from her position as leader of the Norwegian Trade Union Confederation (LO) as a result of accusations of bullying. Her meteoric career, which had seen Valla rise to the top of the country’s power elite, including a short stint as Secretary of State for Justice, came to an abrupt end as an “offi cial investigation” instigated by Valla and LO itself found her guilty of bullying. In addition to the personal tragedy this represented for Valla herself and the political cost of losing what was considered the Norwegian trade union movement’s brightest and most infl uential strategist for many years, the organisational and economic costs of the case were immense, considering the internal upheaval that followed her resignation, as a result of which the organisation was landed with a bill of close to US$2 million for the investigation alone (Tranøy, 2007).