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Signs and Examples of Bad Company Culture

signs and examples of bad company culture
Mary Kate Morrow

By Mary Kate Morrow

Clear Examples of a Bad Company Culture

Company culture is defined as the characteristics, behaviors, and values of an organization. Toxic company culture has significant negative impacts on a business, ranging from high employee turnover rates to workers with an unhealthy work life balance.

There are many clear examples of bad company cultures that enterprises can learn from. Understanding the warning signs of toxic company culture can help avoid its development or even assist in confronting an existing negative work environment.

8 prominent warning signs and examples of bad company culture include-

1. High Employee Turnover

Top talent employees do not want to work for a business that has a bad company culture. If a business possesses a high employee turnover rate, a toxic workplace may be a significant contributor.

In order to combat turnover and toxic work culture, businesses should make sure that team members are provided with the proper training, tools, and development opportunities. From management administering career advice to advancement paths drafted by human resources professionals, there are many ways to decrease employee turnover rates and address toxic work environments.

High employee turnover is costly for businesses. Not only does human resources need to recruit and screen new applicants, but the entire work environment is negatively impacted when top talent employees leave their positions.

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2. Improper Communication

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Great communication is necessary for collaboration and business success. A clear warning sign of bad company culture is a lack of communication.

A corporate culture that does not encourage team building and working together will quickly feel the consequences. While employee engagement might suffer in the short term, in the long term team members may choose to quit.

3. Incompatible Company Values

The core values of a company should be reflected in its company culture. However, company values are too often just statements and do not align with company work protocols.

For example, a business could say that their company is focused on fairness, but then choose not to grant their own workers a living wage. Or alternatively, company values could claim to reward high performing team members but fail to supply promotions or raises.

4. Unhealthy Work Life Balance

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A significant warning sign of a toxic workplace is the lack of a healthy work life balance. Examples of an unhealthy work life balance include team members working overtime regularly uncompensated or being assigned increasingly unrealistic deadlines.

Although executives may think that pushing employees to their limit is the best way to receive a return on investment, the consequences to employee engagement and productivity actually constitute this behavior as self-sabotaging.

When team members are encouraged to have a healthy work life balance they are more productive, motivated, and engaged, and as a result, much more profitable assets to a business.

Online employee scheduling software that makes shift planning effortless.
Try it free for 14 days.

5. Negative Work Environment

The physical work environment greatly influences the overall company culture. An office space that is cramped, unclean, or unwelcoming can quickly deter employees from wanting to work there.

With an increase in remote workers, many businesses are finding that the best work environment they can supply is actually the most cost effective option available. Working from home not only supplies a better work life balance for many team members but also decreases costs associated with maintaining a physical office space.

6. Employee Incentivizing Issues

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Properly compensating and incentivizing high performing team members is crucial to avoiding a toxic work culture. Negative company culture often neglects its top performers or actively punishes them by overassigning tasks and responsibilities.

Warning signs that employees are not being incentivized appropriately include higher employee turnover and lower employee engagement levels. Beyond supplying career advice and development opportunities, corporations should be going out of their way to financially reward top talent workers.

Although verbal praise is a great reinforcer of positive behavior, a lack of financial incentives or a clear promotion track will result in a toxic work culture that negatively impacts employees in addition to overall bottom line profitability.

7. Bad Reputation

Finding toxic company culture examples is easy with resources like Glassdoor available for job applicants and customers to review. Consistent negative reviews from both former and existing team members is a clear signal to management that changes need to occur.

Increasingly, bad corporate culture is influencing the sales and success of businesses. Consumers are more interested than ever before in the ethics, morality, and overall company cultures of the businesses they give their money to.

8. Bad Management Styles

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An incompetent executive can negatively affect both the work environment and company culture. Warning signs of negative management styles include a high employee turnover rate and unhappy team members.

If team members in a company work best when away from their management staff, that is a problem. Instead, employees should feel comfortable talking to executives about anything from career advice to innovative ideas.

Key Takeaways

  • Warning signs and examples of bad company culture range from lack of employee incentivization to high employee turnover rates.
  • Understanding both examples and warning signs of toxic company culture can help avoid or combat it.

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