Have you begun to notice that the atmosphere in your team is deteriorating, and that your employees have become less proactive and efficient? Perhaps a toxic employee has appeared in your Dream Team, destroying the team almost imperceptibly and negatively affecting processes within the company. So how do you figure out who is poisoning the team, and is it possible to neutralize him? Find out more in this article.
A toxic employee is a person whose actions, behaviors, and emotions are detrimental to the team or company property over a period of time. Such people regularly complain, spread rumors, devalue, be rude, taunt, create and engage in conflict situations, etc. Researchers say that this is how toxic people deal with personal stress and trauma.
A toxic employee is difficult to spot at a glance. Such professionals are excellent manipulators and may not even realize that their behavior is poisoning the lives of others and harming the company.
A toxic employee on the team is unpleasant, demotivating, costly to the company, and contagious to other employees:
Negative and rude behavior, according to research, is passed from one employee to another. That is, where there is one toxic employee, expect others to appear. Therefore, it is very important to determine as soon as possible who is poisoning the atmosphere in the team.
There is no perfect formula for determining how toxic an employee's behavior may be. But research has shown, there are several signs that indicate an employee may be behaving toxically toward co-workers and work processes:
To always be aware of possible changes in your company's climate, conduct regular 180 and 360 degree assessments, and don't miss 1-on-1 meetings.
Firing one toxic employee is twice as beneficial to the company as hiring one most effective person. But firing is a measure of last resort, which is worth resorting to if the following recommendations do not help.
Talk to the employee
Toxic behavior is a sign that the employee is unhappy with certain areas of his or her life. Talk to the professional informally. A 1-on-1 meeting format is ideal for this. Think in advance about all the topics you want to discuss during a one-on-one conversation. Here's a sample list of questions that will help you understand what's on your employee's mind:
After the communication, document all the information and offer the employee appropriate assistance. If the employee is unhappy with a particular work item, suggest a possible strategy for changing work processes. If the employee has family or personal problems, perhaps recommend the services of a psychologist or other professional.
Toxic employees may not notice or be aware of the destructiveness they bring to the team with their behavior. If you find out or notice that a professional has behaved inconsistently at a certain point, talk to him or her. Tell the employee why the behavior is unacceptable at your company, building on the company culture.
Push the employee to change
Move from words to action if the toxic employee does not want to change. In this case, point by point, lay out what the future holds employees who don't want to adhere to the corporate culture: from taking away social benefits and bonuses to firing them.
Curb the spread of toxicity
Look out for the well-being of other employees who may encounter the toxicity of a colleague. To do this, allow the "problematic" professional to work remotely if possible, or arrange for a separate workplace until the employee has worked through the disadvantages of his behavior or until he leaves the company.
The best way to avoid encountering a toxic employee in the company is not to hire such a person. What methods help you hire the right employee, we tell you further.
During the search for the optimal candidate, recruiters and HR managers often pay a lot of attention to hard skills, soft skills remain a bit on the sidelines. But it's the flexible skills that allow you to understand what kind of person you're looking for. So use a structured interview and pay attention to detail during the interview:
If you have doubts after talking to the candidate, talk to his former colleagues. It's their feedback that will give you a complete picture of your possible future employee.
We wish you to quickly identify toxic employees, candidates, and effectively neutralize them.