Workplace bullying is defined as repeated and health-threatening mistreatment that is humiliating, intimidating, and threatening in a manner that interferes with full participation in work. The perpetrators desire to control the victim and bullies in the workplace select their victims and methods of bullying. The topic is of great importance since bullying at the workplace takes different forms such as undermining a person’s contribution at the workplace, threatening abuse, withholding necessary information, establishing unattainable deadlines, changing the work guidelines, intruding into individual privacy, yelling, constant criticism, unwarranted punishments, assignment of unreasonable duties and tampering with individual personal belongings in order to intimidate the individual (McCarthy, 2001). Workplace bullying in Japan is a social problem that is linked to the current cultural phenomenon.
Japanese culture is complex and multi-layered since it has been developing for the last a thousand years. Japanese people view the culture as a source of inspiration especially fashion, geisha traditional dancers, and Samurai warriors wielding their two swords. Japanese business leaders perceive themselves as Samurai warriors and deal effectively with subordinates through bullying or issuing verbal commands that may be insulting. Social ranks and status in the society are clear and everyone is aware of each other’s age and status in the institution (Gordon, 1998). In some companies, the employees are issued with magazines that display the formal ages of each employee, and ranking is used in various employment matters such as promotions, distribution of awards, and recognition of superior performance (Jacobson, Hood & Buren, 2014, p 57).