Do you work in a toxic workplace?
By Marcel Schwantes
I'm sure you can recognise some of these characteristics. We have all worked where some of these apply.
But how do you stop it?
A good starting point is to make sure that all employees are keeping a finger on the pulse of the organization to make sure people are being cared for to do their best work, and that fear is being pumped out of the workplace regularly.
When toxic behaviors persist, here are some strategies to consider:
Conduct a culture or employee engagement survey that reflects on the work environment and management's performance or leadership. If they're the problem, HR needs to step in and play a role in assessing organizational health.
Have HR and well-meaning managers conduct stay interviews to keep good people from leaving.
To weed out toxic employees, include behaviors like "respect," "teamwork," and "encouragement" in your performance planning and then measure them.Invest in coaching for managers and staff.
When dealing with a toxic co-worker who is apt to turn a discussion into a he-said, she-said mud-sling, bring in a third party to document meetings to protect yourself from drama.
Every employee needs to learn the value of setting boundaries. Define what is acceptable behavior and what isn't--then communicate assertively with appropriate boundaries.
Expose the problem by promoting a healthy culture and living out shared values to squeeze out unwanted things like gossip, bullying, sabotage, disrespect, and insubordination. The larger the group campaigning against toxic behaviors, the better they'll be rooted out.
At HENRY REED this is our area of specialty and we are happy to discuss ways to repair a toxic workplace or if it's not quite toxic yet, how to prevent it!
Call 1300 266 995 for a confidential discussion.