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Seven toxic behaviors that can predict the future

Seven toxic behaviors that can predict the future

At a previous company, we had a high-ranking executive whose office behavior was getting progressively worse, toxic and hostile.  Below are seven toxic behaviors that were documented:

  1. Calling employees at home late at night, allegedly intoxicated, yelling and cursing about mistakes made at work.
  2. Isolating staff members in meetings and berating them in front of their coworkers.
  3. Threatening to fire employees if they did not meet her demands.
  4. Creating an environment of management by fear and intimidation.
  5. Showing up at work extremely nice one day and terribly nasty the next; employees never knew what to expect.
  6. Using a subjective bonus system to reward those who kissed-up and blindly followed orders.
  7. Continually and creatively used profanity and the f-bomb to intimidate people.

Although I understood this executive possessed a great deal of clout with top leaders, I was caught off guard that our CEO, the tyrant’s boss, had a hard time believing his valuable executive was behaving this way.  But after further insight, I realized she was the CEO’s tool in getting people to do things the way they wanted.  Mr. CEO played nice.  Ms. CFO played dirty.  It was their people strategy.

If you have this good and evil combination working in your company’s top leadership team, it could be a sign your workplace is headed down the path to destruction.



Kevin Kennemer is founder of The People Group based in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Kevin is driven by his passion for company owners and their need to earn a profit, employees' desire for a positive and fulfilling work experience, and the community that benefits when both groups do well.


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