Working in a toxic workplace is a nightmare nobody should experience. It breeds stress, lowers your confidence and morale, propagates unhealthy competition, negativity, the list is endless. If you work in a toxic environment for too long, it could affect your personal life, and destroy your mental peace and stability. So, in this article, you will learn some of the signs that indicate your workplace is toxic.
Your work environment reflects who you are as employees. If you notice any of the signs discussed here in your workplace, it’s time to move on. No employee achieves their dreams in a toxic workplace. Otherwise, your workplace will incubate negative attitudes, sabotage, and insubordination.
Here are 5 glaring signs that your workplace is toxic:
#1. Your Boss Is a Bad Leader
One of the signs that your workplace is toxic is when there’s bad leadership. Having a bad boss at work makes every moment you spend in the office a nightmare. This will affect your performance and makes you less productive at work.
So, if your boss always nags, never appreciates you, and puts intense pressure on you, you don’t need a soothsayer to know that you are working in a toxic environment.
Most times, superiors in the workplace abuse their power. They make their staff feel inferior and bully them at work.
Furthermore, if your boss has the habit of coming late to work and procrastinating important tasks, they are certainly a bad leader. If you stay in that workplace too long, you may unconsciously learn these bad habits.
#2. Poor Communication
Poor communication is one of the signs that your workplace is toxic. When there’s poor communication, you won’t be aware of important information.
There’s no way you can be productive in a workplace where there’s an ineffective communication system. You will always be battling with stress, unmet expectations, frustrations, and dissatisfied clients.
Disappointedly, you won’t get accolades for your exceptional performance. But your boss will always criticize you with negative and harsh words when you make a little mistake.
Again, you can’t grow your career in an environment where there’s no effective communication. Such a place will always be toxic because it breeds negativity, mistrust among colleagues, low morale, absenteeism, and bad interpersonal relationships.
#3. Everyone Has a Bad Attitude
If everyone has a bad attitude in your workplace, it’s obvious that you are working in a hostile environment. In this type of workplace, nobody is enthusiastic about the work. Most of the employees are still in the office because there’s no other option.
Furthermore, the lack of happiness and poor morale in this environment can lead to a high employee turnover rate. Nobody wants to work in a place where they don’t feel at home. Even if they are working there already, they won’t hesitate to leave once there’s another opportunity.
When people with bad attitudes surround you, it will hurt your performance. After a while, you will become apathetic and despondent.
#4. There’s No Work-Life Balance
One of the signs that your workplace is toxic is when there’s no work-life balance. Everybody needs to have a work-life balance to remain healthy. And if your work doesn’t give you enough time for yourself, you are obviously working in a hostile environment.
For instance, if your boss demands that you always be available on call, your job is toxic even during the weekends. It’s normal for your boss to call you once in a while for something important, but when it becomes a routine, it’s a sign that you are working in a toxic environment.
#5. You Always Feel Burnout
When you work in a toxic environment, you tend to burn out easily. According to the World Health Organization, workplace burnout is a legal medical diagnosis. And if you work in a toxic office, you tend to experience any of the following burnouts;
Frenetic burnout is the type of burnout you experience if you aren’t getting positive results despite putting in much effort. Whenever you dedicate your time and effort to a particular project, and the result falls short of your expectations, you tend to experience frenetic burnout.
You are prone to under-challenged burnout if you are always bored at work. Sometimes, job satisfaction can cause it and can affect your mood.
So, if you experience any of these burnouts in your office, it’s one of the signs that your workplace is toxic.
How to Handle a Toxic Work Environment
Of course, nobody wants to work in a toxic environment. But you can’t just resign from a toxic workplace like that without having an alternative. So, here’s how to handle a toxic workplace until you get a new job;
#1. Discuss with employees who feel the same way you do
If you notice that you work in a toxic environment, try to make friends with employees who feel the same way as you. Share important information and inspire each other to be more productive.
#2. Engage in fun activities after work
Once you are not at work, try not to think about what’s happening there. Instead, engage in activities that could relieve your stress. You can go to the gym, swimming pool, party, learn a new skill, etc.
#3. Create a list to keep you busy at work
Before you leave home for work, always create a list of tasks you want to execute at work. This will help you stay busy, focused, and pay little or no attention to the toxic work environment.
#4. Document everything you do
When you are working in a toxic environment, you have to be smart. Ensure that you document every email you receive, note down comments, and meeting decisions. You may need them as evidence in the future.
These are some of the signs that your workplace is toxic. Take note of them, and if you notice any of these signs in your office, start preparing your exit plan.