Ever had the feeling you’re in a toxic workplace? What are some of the signs of being in a toxic workplace?

First up its important to say Work is work, it’s not meant to be fun. But it doesn’t have to be a dragging misery every second of the day. If you feel that you’re dreading going into work every day ask yourself “Am I suited to this job?” If you’re not suited to the job that’s one issue, but you like the day to day tasks you are required to do but the job still bites, you might well have a toxic work place on your hands.


For what it’s worth I like the day to day tasks in my job. The pay I get is less than if I did another similar level government job in any other government dept. This does get me down on occasion but if it was the only drawback I could deal with it. What I don’t like is the micro management from higher ups that have reduced the place to a living misery. We are monitored down to the minute, if we get up to take a quick toilet stop we have to inform our supervisors, if we need a pause between phone calls we need to inform our supervisors. If we get our phone codes wrong we have our jobs threatened.

There’s no real need for this level of monitoring. It doesn’t increase productivity. Infact it lowers it, because the average worker spends so much time accounting for themselves that it interferes with the job they do. The stats this place keeps on our calls or work item are detailed enough and it’s easy to tell if someone is doing their job or just messing around.


The work we do is already stressful and mentally demanding. Many people can’t cope with it anyway. I joined my work place in May last year and now its May the next year and 80% of the intake I joined with have left the job. Many of the next intake after this have also left. Any job there would be some level of turnover but for 80% of the staff to leave means that I’m not the only one not having a great time of this. This should ring serious alarm bells.


Why don’t I get another job you ask? Well, I can apply for jobs but with the strict monitoring of everything we do it’s almost impossible to take a phone call, unless I’m lucky enough that someone rings during my lunch break or I call them and they pick up around lunch time. So in essence it’s now much harder to get out for the average worker and lay the groundwork for another job. So those leaving this job are in many cases leaving without having anything lined up. I’m not prepared to voluntarily leave this job without another lined up. If I’m going to get forced out, I’m going out on top and being force out with another job lined up


Is work place bullying common place in your work? Is the workplace itself bullying you? Systematic bullying of anyone is not cool, but it also shows that the workplace you’re in turns a blind eye to these practices. It might not be you experiencing it but generally speaking your work place either doesn’t tolerate bullying or it turns a blind eye towards it, or even actively encourages it by holding your job over your head to get your to do things that are beyond the scope of your job or overworking you on a routine basis.


I guess in summing this up if you’re experiencing a whole pile of these problems, there’s a good chance you’re in a toxic workplace. If you’ve had to ask yourself “Is my work place toxic?” there’s a good chance it is. What can you do about it? We’ll thats up to you. All I can say is look at the situation realistically. Look after yourself first. YOU need to keep working and keep an income coming in. I tend to think, “It’s not my responsibility to fix this work place” I can drop hints, if asked. Maybe there are anonymous employer surveys you can fil out. Do you have a union? Media you can complain to?

Don’t rush into anything that will jeopardise your job. Is there any point complaining to your seniors? Is the workplace toxicity rife through out the whole organisation? It’s commonly said that a fish rots from the head first. The rot will then spread through the rest of the body. The same can be said for many corporate structures. A rotten management will allow for the rotten workplace to happen. I Handled this situation by basically sending out a heap of applications to other jobs, when it became clear that nobody in my work place was prepared to do anything.

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