Employees are the greatest strength and asset for any organization. But at times employees display behaviors that are not amenable to the culture of the company. Such employees not only undermine the values of the organization but also bring down the morale of co-workers.
The common signs of a destructive employee are an antagonistic attitude, general unproductivity, poor morale, unwillingness to go the extra mile or indulging in backbiting, infighting or being uncollaborative. An old adage goes,“People are hired for their talents and fired for their behavior”, here are a few destructive attitudes people exhibit:
“That’s not my job”
This kind of employee are procrastinators who would do anything to shirk work, so when asked to perform any work that’s not formally under the purview of their job description, they would simply refuse. Such employees would not even hesitate to overlook a potentially disastrous situation or mistake in their work that could ruin the overall task, just because it’s not part of their job.
Imagine if all your employees indulged in such behavior and only performed tasks that were strictly under their job roles, this would not bode well. That’s why you can’t afford any of your employees to display such “not my job” attitude.
“Did you hear?”
This attitude is associated with gossip-mongering employees who always have some juicy news or ungrounded rumours up their sleeve. Such people indulge in excessive gossiping and are sometimes only preoccupied with office news and private affairs of co-workers than actual work. Not only does this lead to a decrease in their productivity, but their constant interruption and discussions lead to office politics and unnecessary drama.
This worsens when office politics is accompanied with a general negativity in the work environment that affects overall employee engagement. To contain this, talk directly to employees who initiate gossip and request them to not distract their co-workers.
"That’s my job, don’t touch it"
Often, we expect people to take ownership of their project and be accountable for the outcome of the task but when an employee becomes so proprietary about his project that he rejects any ideas or collaboration from other team members, they’re actually saying “That’s my job, don’t touch it".
Such an attitude hampers others from growing and developing, as employees with this syndrome hoard information and do not pass on the learnings from a project. Also, you may be dependent on this person for information on the projects as he wouldn’t have any backups or second in charge. Their need for control and job security can be a hindrance to the team’s development so such behavior must be checked.
Always grumpy attitude
Having an employee complain about some of the things some of the time is okay, but having him complain about all the things all the time is the sign of a toxic behavior. Right from the office lighting to the internet connection, such people are not satisfied with anything and eventually are the cause of creating negativity in the team. Working on any reasonable complaints from employees is a good thing but people who complain just for the sake of it isn’t good for employee morale and needs to be combatted.
Most of the attitudes are caused by an emotional insecurity or need for control on the job and maybe unconscious in nature. Such behavior should be corrected with proper coaching and discussion, as it may decrease productivity for business and influence workplace environment.