ISE Partners

The “Toxic” Office

By Louisa Howard  • 

Let's talk about... toxic work environments 

I spoke to a candidate last week who was really struggling with their current employer.

We are seeing more and more amazing people stepping away from roles due to poor work culture and toxic environments.

So, what are the signs of a toxic workplace?

Passive aggression and "the blame game"

Passive aggressive comments can often be detrimental to things like employee motivation, self-esteem and working environments.

Poor communication can result in the "blame game". Senior leaders may put blame onto the wider team for things like poor culture or office gossip. Often though, this is a result of a lack of transparency and insincere communication.

Toxic positivity

Positivity and a positive mindset can be extremely beneficial in work; however, it can be used detrimentally. Examples of toxic positivity can include reacting to employee feedback poorly, labelling it as 'negative' or a result of a 'bad attitude'. Another example could be a lack of respect for boundaries. Managers calling the team a "family" can blur lines and boundaries, it is important for a work life balance to have clear definitions.

No movement

Despite conversations of potential within the business, promotions and pay rises, if these never actually happen it can feel a bit standstill, which can result in a lack of motivation and affect self-esteem.

Unmotivated co-workers

Toxic environments and poor leadership rarely leave people feeling motivated. This can then lead to more micromanagement and can turn into a vicious cycle.

Burn out

This can be the result when everything gets on top of you and you end up physically, mentally, and emotionally drained.

High turnover

Sometimes it is coincidental when a larger number of people leave a team, sometimes there can be an underlying internal issue.

Career Contessa | Job Search + Career Advice for the "10 signs You're in a Toxic Work Environment" article!

If anyone ever wants a confidential chat about their current working situation, my door is always open!

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