A recent study suggests that over half (54%) of employees are more likely to quit if they have a toxic coworker. Even those who are willing to stay experience negative effects such as stress, anxiety, and absenteeisms. Here are four tips to help you or others deal with toxic coworkers:
- Understand what a toxic employee is. Generally, they share three characteristics: they gossip, they make you defend yourself, and they are often two-faced.
- Set clear boundaries. If possible, separate yourself physically. When that isn’t possible, keep conversations short, refuse to engage in gossip or complaining, and don’t share personal information.
- Communicate and uphold your personal values. Try to stay calm and stay true to your values. When you feel your emotions bubbling up, try to speak directly, compassionately, and respectfully.
- Consult a supervisor. Get someone involved, possibly a manager who doesn’t oversee either of you, to brainstorm with you about how to improve the work relationship and help you feel safer and more comfortable.