As a manager, you have a ton of things to worry about. Will the items you need to successfully run your company come in on time? Is the workplace environment as safe and hazard free as possible? Are all of your employees up to date on the rules and regulations? The one thing you shouldn’t have to worry about how to handle your toxic employees.
Unfortunately, this is the case, at times. All workplaces have at least one toxic employee, there’s no escaping them. Or is there? As a smart manager, you need to know how to deal with these kinds of employees and how to prevent toxicity as early as possible.
As a manager, you will have some hand in the hiring process when it’s time to employ or replace an employee. You can head off hiring a toxic employee by going with your gut. Are you getting a weird vibe from the employee in question? Of course, it could be nothing. But what if it is something? It may be hard to spot a toxic employee just from the interview since the interview is when most employees try to dazzle the person doing the hiring.
“But in this day and age, where everyone posts everything on social media, all you have to do is sift through their social media pages to see if they are the right fit for your company, especially if red flags are flying during their interview”, says Dion Sander, a communications manager at Boomessays and Topcanadianwriters.
Documentation Is Key
Documentation will be your best friend when it comes to dealing with toxic employees. This is where telling your employees what is expected of them goes out the window. How often have you told an employee to do something and gave them a deadline, only for them to tell you they forgot, wasn’t told, or had other things to do and swore it wouldn’t happen again?
Be sure and keep documentation on this toxic employee; every time they defy you, don’t follow directions, or cause friction with the rest of the employees, you write it down and you’ll have your paper trail in case you would have to have a meeting with your Human Resources department. It may be more paperwork, but it covers you in the long run if it comes down to you vs. the toxic employee.
At most workplaces, you wind up spending more time there than time with your family. So, the fact that your employees become a family in the workplace is natural. However, you always want to make sure you keep a safe distance with what you share with your employees. How many times have you shown pictures of your children, spoke about upcoming vacation plans, and doctors’ appointments?
This is okay, but at some point, you have to maintain a level of professionalism. You never want for an employee to use the line, “but I thought you were my friend,” when you reprimand them. Sure, you can be friendly towards them, but you never want to make it seem like you’re so friendly to where they see you as a friend first and a manager second.
Another option would be pulling the toxic employee off to the side and have a meeting with them. Often times, people are going through things. It doesn’t have to necessarily be problems at work, it can be problems at home; it’s easy to say, “don’t bring your home problems to work”, but sometimes you can’t avoid it.
“Pull that toxic employee off to the side, talk with them and see if anything is going on at home that might be affecting the employee’s work ethic. However, if it’s a situation where the employee continues to be toxic, it’s not a home problem, it's a work problem”, explains Debra Leathers, a recruiter at Essayroo and Studentwritingservices.
Sometimes a private meeting may not do the trick. What could help is turning your office into a safe space and letting your employees discuss what is going on in the workplace. Maybe your toxic employee thinks you’re seeing things from a managerial position and just being picky. Give your other employees that safe space to express the toxicity of the employee, but not in a manner where anyone is ganging up on one another.
If all else fails, maybe it’s time to improve the peace in your office and get rid of the toxic employee. If the toxicity of that one employee is affecting the other employees and the peace within the office, as a smart manager, it is your job to get rid of that employee. You want to make sure that you are doing everything you can to improve employee motivation.
So whether your toxic employee is causing drama within the office or making everyone’s life miserable with their constant complaining, it is your duty and your right as a smart manager to make the workplace environment peaceful by avoiding to hire toxic employees.
Molly Crockett is a tech security blogger for Writemyaustralia and Elite Assignment Help. Molly’s writing focuses on how businesses can help protect themselves against the threats at large. She is always seeking ways to help develop writing and research skills in young people, and she teaches for UK Writings, an online writing service.