The Queen Bee Syndrome

Karen Bune

It is often said that women help women in the workplace. However, in many cases that becomes a myth when the Queen Bee Syndrome evolves. A pattern of hostile and destructive behavior occurs when supervisor and those in leadership positions become insecure, envious and intimidated by accomplishments and positions of those under them who become targeted victims. As a consequence of their perception–however ill perceived–they employ destructive tactics that victimize those under them and their actions can result in a destructive outcome. Victims of this syndrome frequently suffer from significant emotional distress, develop physical health problems, build up measurable anger, and may even be demoted, forced out of their jobs, or motivated to leave of their own volition. The effects of this syndrome cause profound victimization that can have lasting consequences and can jeopardize their future career prospects and potential.

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