The HR Manager's Guide To Dealing With a Toxic Work Environment

July 10, 2019
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Sometimes things go awry in the office for which you are HR manager. Although it’s not your fault it ended up that way, the responsibility for it is likely to end up in your in-tray (and in your visitor’s chair).

When an employee knocks on your door and tells you they dread coming to work each day because of the atmosphere in the office, you need to do some soul-searching – and some work environment appraisal.

If their complaints of bullying, widespread negativity, and/or incompetent management hold water, you’ve got a toxic workplace on your hands. You probably had some intimation of the situation when you noticed that a lot of your employees have quit lately.

In the long run (and more urgently in the case of bullying), these matters need addressing seriously and a real shift of workplace culture is required. In the short run you need to look out for your troubled employee (and the others who are undoubtedly deciding whether to quit or complain) to help them fulfil their potential, stay healthy and happy, and hopefully keep them onboard until things get better.

They may not be keen to name names as to the people that are making their work environment intolerable. But either way, it is worth suggesting that they give their ‘toxic’ colleagues a wide berth as far as is professionally possible while you strategize how to get things back on track.

Your troubled employee needs some positivity right now, so stay upbeat and suggest they do what they can to feed some positivity into the situation and to get some sense of fulfilment from their work day. For example, look into professional development training that they might be able to take (this could also get them out of the office for a while). It might be anything from software training to business education to a course in being a fire marshal for the building.

But you might also ask them to help you to rebuild positivity in the workplace by remaining positive and supportive with their colleagues. If you can get a solid core of the team working together and looking out for each other, it will become easier to isolate and remedy the negative elements.

Today I want to share an informative and actionable guide to surviving a toxic work environment. It’s worth picking up on a few of these tips yourself, and then sharing it with somebody who needs it – the infographic is packed with tips on how to self-care and to get by in the office when morale has taken a distinct downwards-turn.


The HR Manager's Guide To Dealing With a Toxic Work Environment
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