A toxic work environment will not only damage your psyche, but eventually your overall health.
Most of the times when I was working in my past jobs, I used to play down what was going down in the workplace – as a tool for survival. I could only stick around as long as I believed that somehow, the company was alright.
But there’s a couple of red flags you should be aware of when you’re working in a day job – and if any of the below apply to your workplace, you should be running for the hills – a.k.a. looking for something new.
This one can come in a trillion forms. Are you expected to wear tight skirts or heels? Are you being paid less than males in the same position? Are your employers treating you like decoration? Are you being called emotional when you passionately disagree? Are you being asked over and over about your family plans?
Of course, you can choose to call people out on that kind of behavior. It might eventually make the whole place better for all females.
But if you do & you get negative resonance for standing up for your right to be treated equally, you know what time it is.
This, too, can come in so many shades and packages.
And if you’ve ever had to experience it, you don’t need me to tell you about this.
Since I was born white, I have never experienced any myself – but I worked for people who would put applications aside when the name sounded too foreign or the skin tone of the candidate was too dark. I worked for people who spoke in condescending ways about the heritage of some of their employees. Only a horrible & toxic person would do that. I had the privilege of being disgusted & start looking for something else.
But if you are being targeted with racist behavior at work, make sure you get out of there as soon as you can, and think about reporting them.
3. „Barley Legal“
You’re being instructed to do things in your job that are permitted by law. Your boss knows that and still asks you to do it?
They obviously care more for their profits than they respect you – and they have no problem putting you in danger of being prosecuted.
4. Strong fluctuation
When your workplace feels like central station because so many people come in & leave in a short period of time, there’s something foul here. An Employer who won’t care for longterm employees typically uses people up and replaces them as soon as possible. Human connection is not as valued as their business.
5. Late & Incomplete Payments
There’s this attitude in some employers. They believe, because you signed a contract with them & they pay you X amount of money a month, they own you. And they pay you whatever, whenever. Obviously, your time & energy is not being valued here.
6. Asking you to work after work
A short mail, a WhatsApp message, and your boss tells you they need X by tomorrow. But you’ve already left the office. If you didn’t sign a contract that says you’re being paid for on-demand services outside of office hours, they’re asking you to work for free at that moment. Again, your time & energy is not being valued and on top of that, your private life is being disrespected here.
7. Changing Schedules without your consent
Your boss is presenting you with a new timetable – including you working more or less hours than initially agreed on – without having asked you about your availability. If you didn’t agree to spontaneous and random changes of your working hours in your contract, your boss is clearly overstepping a line here.
8. No breaks
You’re expected to work more than 5 hours without a break – or all you get is five minutes away from the desk?
You’re a human being with basic needs like food & movement.
Not a machine.
9. Your health is being put at risk.
This one can come in so many ways, too. Black mold on the walls. Radiation. Unsecured danger areas. Smoking indoors. Shifts that don’t allow you to get enough sleep to be sane at work.
10. You’re expected to work despite of being sick.
You’re clearly in need of rest & healing, but your boss is asking you or threatening you to come in anyways? They clearly don’t give a damn about you as a person, and all that’s valued is the results you bring – even at price of your wellbeing.
To be completely host with you, I have seen each one of the above during my 9-5 days. None of these are acceptable, and you shouldn’t have to deal with any of these.
How many of these did you encounter / do you still see happening in the workplace?
Let me know in the comments!!