How Toxic Is Your Workplace?

Working in a toxic environment is no one’s ideal situation. Now the job market isn’t doing so well in Jamaica; in fact, it’s the worst time to start searching for a new job.

While it’s okay to have a stressful day now and then at the office, there are significant signs that highlight you’re working in a toxic work environment. But what exactly do some of these signs entail?

A toxic work environment is any environment that makes you feel uncomfortable, unappreciated or undervalued. This ranges from an air of hostility, being talked down to, bullying, mismanagement and subtle forms of poor communication.

Those above can come from a coworker, your boss, and even your clients. 

No one should ever have to work in an environment that causes you physical/psychological pain, but unfortunately, this is more common than we acknowledge. In accepting this as the norm, we run the risk of harming ourselves over the long term, both professionally and psychologically.

Do these signs sound familiar? Does anyone else in your company feel the same way? Or are you simply being emotional? The chances are you aren’t sensitive or overreacting, what you feel is real but employers/ some employees label your feelings as such because, at the end of the day, their bottom line comes first.

1. Your boss has poor leadership skills

Sometimes a toxic work environment is derived from how a boss treats their employees. Supervisors can take advantage of their power and make the staff feel inferior by talking down to them. In some instances, the managers’ neglect of said environment can contribute to the toxicity.

2. Your colleagues are unprofessional

 If your fellow employees take credit for your work, love to spread rumors or throw you under the bus, it will be hard for you to work under such conditions and it leads to a deteriorating environment. If you don’t feel supported by your colleagues then maybe it’s time to be a part of a different team.

3. The excitement to go to work isn’t there

Isn’t this usually the telltale sign that something is wrong? Everyone has days where they don’t feel like going into the office, finding an excuse and when you do muster the courage and drag yourself out of the house, you’re not concerned with the time. You think “whatever happens, happens. 

4. You’re more aware of all the things that are going wrong

When you first started the job, the broken water cooler wasn’t an issue, the faulty WiFi, even your favorite bathroom stall being out of use for months (yes I have a favorite stall…doesn’t everyone?). But as times goes on, the rose colored glasses come off, and you’re annoyed by everything.

5. Constantly looking for a new job

If you’re searching the classifieds like clockwork, then you have a problem. Your passion or interest no longer lies in your current job.

6. Your Boss is preventing you from progressing professionally

It’s hard to imagine you could live in a world where your boss doesn’t want you to excel, but the harsh reality is you have managers who desire to confine you to a box because they are afraid of your potential. Most persons would ideally like to work with someone or in an environment that grooms us to be the successful professional we dreamed we could be. Instead, we are given ‘busy’ work even when we are capable of doing so much more.

Just because you want a job or desire to sustain your employment long term, doesn’t mean you have to deal with these issues. If you find that many of these signs are present in your work environment, then it may be time to change your career. 

Remember: your well-being should be a priority, if you should fail to carry out a crucial aspect of your duties, your employers won’t hesitate to replace you. However, experience in the current job doesn’t mean it won’t work out if you choose to pursue a different one.

Do you work in a toxic environment? Let me know how you deal with it in the comments below.

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