When negative toxic talk infects a company culture the associates and support staff respond to that behavior harshly. The energy of the entire department and managers may be tempted to stop trying and just give in. The feeling of being powerless to counteract the damage caused by disparaging comments and persistent negativity, maybe overwhelming and the belief “you can’t change human nature” might play a role in how this behavior is handled.
There are several points to take into processing the way to address this issue. As the Human Resources Lead you must examine the following:
- The signs that your office has a problem with negative talk
- How managers may inadvertently encourage negative behaviors
- The best way to deal with tattletales, drama queens, whiners, and bullies
- How you can make gossip and the grapevine work in your favor
- When the rumor mill will always heat up and what to do about it
- The topics that everyone needs to avoid at the office
- The importance of management communication
- Start focusing on behavior
- The power of high expectations, sincere praise, and clear consequences
- Effective two-way coaching discussion
- Conducting a “team turnaround” to involve your group in solving the problem
But tolerating these harmful behaviors is NOT the best solution. I am hopeful that these tips will allow you to review your companies process when dealing with this issue.