Today, many employees are stuck in a toxic workplace. These bad vibes can cause people to dislike their jobs, kill productivity, and hamper the growth of many organizations. Having a toxic workplace or bad office culture can turn a profit generating business into a money pit. So, what is a toxic environment and how do we stop it? To understand, we first need to know how a toxic workplace is created so that we can effectively change it and make our organizations a great place to work.
If you are starting to see a decline in communication or you find it difficult to communicate with your team effectively you may have a problem. One of the most well-known signs for toxicity in the work environment is the lack of effective communication. This can have a tremendously negative impact on the production of the business. Communication and team work are vital to any business that wants to be successful. Without communication you will see a rapid decline in individual and team functions. Workers who are subject to a toxic work environment will often say they don’t feel heard or understood by their peers or leaders.
Toxicity in the workplace can take a great employee from thriving to barely surviving. An employee will thrive when they feel valued and appreciated. When they feel underpaid and underappreciated it puts them in fight or flight mode of survival. Or natural instincts kick in our defensive walls go up. You will see an increase in absences, poor attitude, and lack of individual production because they are working to get to the end of the day and not to achieve a shared goal.
Broken relationships and friendships can wreak havoc in the work environment. Gossiping because the norm, cliques are formed, and people feel pitted against one another. Most workers relate these types of experiences to that of being in high school. It is important to work together and have trust in each of your peers. Team building exercises can help strengthen the bonds and trust between team members and build rapport around the office. These exercises don’t have to be elaborate or have huge prizes. They are fun and provide a production break from your ordinary schedule.
As an employee it is imperative to have a good balance of work and home life. Without it you will feel the negative effects it can have on your daily performance and your overall health. These negative effects can go both ways. If you are thriving at work and happy at home life can be so rewarding. If the scale is tipped slightly one way or another it can be very challenging to get back into harmony. These types of imbalances are likely to have a negative effect on not only but your coworkers, as well. Both employee and manager are responsible for creating a workable work/life balance within your company.
Many people know that toxicity can be like a spore of dandelion fluff in the wind once it is blown apart it spreads quickly and all over. As a leader it is important to snuff out any turmoil or issues before the trouble threatens morale within the office. It’s critical to the success of your business that you remain vigilante to any changes in the attitude of your office.
All in all, toxicity in the workplace is something that can occur within any organization, however, with the right environment and the right management your organization can thrive within a strong, happy office. The bottom line is, if management can quickly identify and stop it in its tracks, you will have an organization full of happy employees, willing to work hard for you day in and day out. Best of luck!