December 19, 2018 Last updated December 18th, 2018 1,698 Reads share

Is Your Work Environment Toxic? Find How to Deal With It

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Wellness of mind and body is directly connected to productivity in the workplace.  But, at times, the environment at the office turns toxic or destructive and it invariably affects the health. As the major part of the day is spent in offices, it is essential that the environment stays positive and has a room for growth for everyone. Never ending deadlines, demanding clients and humongous data takes a toll on our lives and adding to this, a negative workplace attenuates the mental as well as physical atrocities.

Toxicity at the workplace can be in the form of an unnerving boss, office dramas, general arguments or even a small discord that might fire up the entire environment. It spreads like fire and gets replicated in our behaviors. For all those who consider offices their second home, this toxicity affects several as the dissatisfaction at the workplace gets carried over to our personal lives. It translates into frustration, stress, depression, and anxiety. The worst part of this is that employees consider them to be the reason for such a situation. However, there are several signs that highlight that your workplace is toxic.

What makes your job dysfunctional

Lack of communication

Improper communication or loopholes in putting across critical information creates a divide among employees. Lack of proper communication channels and absence of feedback mechanism in an organization leads to toxicity in the workplace environment. While working in a big organization with culturally and hierarchically diverse individuals it becomes essential to clarify the expectations of the employer and the employee through timely meetings and healthy conversations. However, a lack of the same will lead to confusions and this will cause anxiety.

Lack of recognition

Recognition for work that an employee has done for the organization is required to keep the employees motivated. Apart from monetary benefits and advances in salaries, praise through word of mouth, or certification for hard work makes the workplace a better place to build a career. At times, it happens that the recognition of one’s effort is taken by either the boss or the reporting manager, this creates a negative environment and acts a deterrent for those employees that are workaholics.

Micromanagement and bad attitude of co-workers

Micromanagement in office instills fear among employees and makes it a school environment. Moreover, a miserable attitude of co-workers who lack enthusiasm for coming to office add to the negativity. Co-workers with attitude and ego problems often do not smile and this creates a controlling environment at an office which is not good for the well being of the employees.

Unfair treatment

Many a time, favoritism prevails in a particular team because of which employees are treated unfairly. Even though you work hard and stretch beyond your usual working hours to finish the work assigned, go an extra mile to deliver work but do not get the required recognition and promotions go to those who stick by the bosses. This is depressing for employees that look forward to growing in the organization and devote a major part of their lives working.

Dysfunctional workflows

Another reason for a destructive work environment is dysfunctional workflows that happen due to continued confusions, arbitrary deadlines, lack of work-life balance and focus. This creates frustrations among employees and if a new working style is not put in place then it is a clear sign of lack of leadership.

Nerve-Wracking bosses

According to researchers, bosses determine the chance of an employee being successful in career and also the growth prospects. However, a tyrannical boss will control his employees every move and will restrict the growth as a professional. Such type of behavior of bosses always comes across as controlling and superior. They tend to think their moves to be right and do not have the capacity to listen to their juniors for any changes in working strategy.

Dealing with toxic workplace

Staying Positive

Running away from existing issues is not the solution. While working at a toxic workplace it is essential to stay positive and focused. This means that you understand what your manager’s expectations are, what they consider to be important and their goals. However, if nothing works in your stride, it is better to escalate the issue to a higher authority rather than taking matters into your own hands.

Avoiding gossip

Another way, to stay away from negativity at work and essentially favoritism is by avoiding gossip. Being part of groups and teams that are best known as gossips mongers must be kept miles apart. Gossiping further brings frustration as rumors spread which are highly likely to be not true. If favoritism is deep-rooted in an organization then there is nothing much you can do about it but one can always keep the communication channels open to spread your word.

Communicating with HR

Communicating with human resource professionals is the best way to put across your point. In case of any heated argument or discord with any of your teammates or seniors then there is always a healthy way to escalate issues. In case things are getting worse, it is better to walk up to the hr so as to determine the office policies and ethical code of conduct.

Shifting departments

If all else fail at the office, it is often recommended to keep focused and look for other verticals within the office. Changing departments will not only save you of the further trauma of dealing with toxic co-workers but will also provide an opportunity to learn new work and explore dimensions. In case, opportunities within the office are not feasible then one might always value his skills and be confident to happily switch to other jobs and organizations that have a good prestige among employees and are known for their employee values.


Though it is lauded to be disciplined and well behaved in office, employees that are constantly being harassed despite their good work and attitude is not acceptable. Also, toxicity at workplace affects a person so dearly that it might lead to serious health issues that will not only hamper your work at current role but will also limit your capabilities going forward. Therefore, it is essential for a successful and satisfying career to work around in an office where your hard work is praised and well honored among peers.

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Emma Salvador

Emma Salvador

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