How to tell if you have a toxic team (Proceedings)


How to tell if you have a toxic team (Proceedings)

Aug 01, 2011

The cost to business

A common mistake made by managers is to ignore problem situations and employees.

     • Good employees leave.
     • Productivity is lost.
     • Morale suffers.
     • Management looks stupid or neglectful.

Most difficult professionals

     • Teachers
     • Lawyers
     • Doctors
          o All are highly educated and talented.
          o Make a living telling others what to do and educating. Often they have developed ways of manipulating people into compliance.
          o Used to having others obey their wishes.

Ten types, three positions

     • 10 types of difficult people
     • 3 types of situations
          o The Boss
          o The Co-worker and colleague
          o The Subordinate
               • Tailor tactics to the outcome you want
               • Communication is a choice and a skill
               • No matter how bright you are, being angry, hurt or disappointed blocks your judgment and clouds professionalism.

Angry and hostile people

     • Chronic belligerents take their anger out on those around them.
     • To overcome inferiority and anxiety, they act in a superior and aggressive way.
     • They NEED to intimidate to bolster their own feelings of self worth.

The browbeater colleague

Sometimes correction is merited, but verbal abuse should not be tolerated. It is NEVER ok to be disrespected, especially in front of an audience.

     • Browbeaters are habitually cruel
     • They fear loss of control


     • To be treated with respect by reducing hostility and developing mutual respect.
     • Respect yourself: You must speak up without cringing or being insubordinate.
     • Practice confrontation at home.
     • Let them vent without interruption, then focus on their concerns (not their anger).
     • Pose questions (hard to be angry and think)
     • Get them to disclose what is really bothering them.


     • Browbeaters lose their power if you don't cower. Deep down they feel they do not deserve respect.
     • They will admire you for speaking firm and with confidence.