US Staffing: Is your job in a “Toxic” workplace?
Oxford’s 2018 Word of the Year is “Toxic.” The word is used to describe relationships, politics, and habits. So, someone might have a “toxic” view of politics for example!
Well, Ben Jones and Jim Dolson of US Staffing Agency say there’s another way to use the word “toxic.” They say it can describe how we see our workplace. They found an article in Forbes’s on-line magazine called “What To Do When Workplace Relationships Turn Toxic”
Jim says a toxic workplace leads to poor health and even damages personal relationships outside of the office. The article gives some tips on how to handle a toxic team environment:
- Calmly speak up. Let’s face it, it can be uncomfortable for employees to speak up against the abusive behavior that drives a toxic workenvironment. Instead of giving in to intimidation tactics, employees should politely vocalize what they are seeing and the impact of that behavior. In other words, call people out on their bad behavior.
- Don’t counter-gossip. When employees try to "one-up" the bully they only make themselves look bad and increase the toxicity. Take the high road, instead.
- Don’t conform to bad behavior that leads to a toxic workplace. Instead, employees should be comfortable with voicing a calm professional opinion when they do not agree with the bully’s perspective or assumptions. Unfortunatley, silence can lead to assumed assent to the behavior. So employees need to feel free to voice dissent of the bully’s views. Don't smile or laugh just to keep the peace. Each employee should set firm boundaries on what types of behavior are acceptable.
- Document and follow up. Document behavior by sticking to the facts, and follow up with the appropriate parties if the bullying continues.
If there can be one single ingredient to success, it’s the ability to build and foster positive relationships. Toxic team behavior destroys relationships. If toxicity is ignored, or even worse promoted by the leadership team, employees will likely start looking for employment elsewhere.
If you are currently working for a company that has toxic environment, and it’s not changing, then maybe it is time to find a new employer. Or, if you are an employer and you need to swap some toxic team members out, contact us. We have a great pool of team members looking for a new place to work.
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