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Why do business leaders keep ignoring toxic employees?

I work in a great team, we are all supportive and respective of each other, in fact we have reputation across the business of being a very "tight team", we understand each other's weakness and strengths and don't exploit them for our own personal gains. It's such a refreshing change, especially from the corporate rat race in London.

About 18 months ago, when I was living and working in London I caught an Uber home after a long day in the office, my driver casually asked me how my day was. I sighed and said “It was ok, but I could do without all the bitching and politics. But I guess being your own boss you don’t get that?

He replied “That’s why I left my corporate job in the city, toxic coworkers made my life miserable, don’t let them destroy you.

We’ve all worked with that one colleague, the passive aggressive one, the one that is rude, disrespectful and disruptive at any chance they get. Thrive on gossip and getting their highs out of other people’s lows. The phrase Toxic Coworker springs to mind, and toxic is the perfect word. This person oozes spitefulness, disdain and bitchiness out of every pore.


A study by office vibe states 62% of respondents reported coworkers cause them more stress than bosses. But here’s the thing, not only is it causing you stress, it’s going to have an effect on your home life as well; your friends, family, partner and children will be drawn into the toxic environment. Perhaps changing your behaviour in the process.

In my experience as an executive coach for the past 17 years, I’ve observed that the more toxic the employee, the less self-aware they generally areLibby Gill, founder and CEO of executive coaching and consulting firm Libby Gill & Company, speaking in the 

It’s not looking good for businesses who ignore the situation, according to the Harvard Business Review:

  • 80 percent of employees lost work time worrying about the offending employee's rudeness.

  • 78 percent said their commitment to the organization declined in the face of toxic behavior.

  • 66 percent said their performance declined.

  • 63 percent lost worktime in avoiding the offender

What exactly is a Toxic Coworker? Here’s what the experts top have to say...