Human Resources Training: Toxic Employees

The Human Resources department should always be the one paving the way for company culture. Occasionally a hiccup can occur and someone in the organization will be come toxic to that culture. In today’s HR Training, we will look at different types of cultural toxicity, and 3 solid steps to take to identify a potentially toxic person before ever hiring them.

The person you would typically picture around the phrase “toxic” is someone who is negative, rude, or hostile to their coworkers, but that’s not always the case. Some employees are toxic just by their work habits, whether it’s pattern laziness, disregard for company values, consistent missing of deadlines, and worst of all: bragging about their lack of acheivement to other employees.

These things may sound inconceivable on paper, but they happen all the time, and are more impactful than you may think. According a report by the Harvard Business School, one toxic employee wipes out the gains for more than two superstars! The fact is, negative behavior of any kind has a profound impact on the mindsets of anyone around it, and there’s a lot at risk for an organization when morale and motivation disappear.

So how do you go about identifying this type of person before they ever become an employee? We at InfoQuest believe in a 3-step approach:

1) Gear the Interview Process toward Identifying Behaviors

  • Be on the lookout for HOW they answer questions. You can use these answers as a gauge of how forthright they are, and how civil they appear to be with people.
  • Use interview questions such as “What would your former employer/subordinates say about you (positive or negative)?”
  • Observe behaviors such as promptness of arrival to the interview, how they speak of their last organization/employer/coworkers.
  • Pay attention to language used. Do they sound like a “victim” or someone who takes responsibility for their actions?

2) Always Contact References and Ask the Right Questions

  • How did their former coworkers feel about working for them? Are they comfortable in diverse situations/with diverse people? Are they collaborative? Do they respond well to authority? ARE THEY ELIGIBLE FOR REHIRE?
  • We recommend having a consistent set of questions to ask every single reference, that way you can easily measure the answers against one another. The single most effective way to get the most out of references with a consistent process is through the use of technology such as SkillSurvey.

3) Consider using Behavioral Talent Assessments

  • There is a reason that 57% of large employers in the U.S. are already using pre-hire assessments: they work! Companies such as TTI leverage technology to deliver patented analytics and job benchmarking to provide granular data on applicant personality types and how well they mesh with the organization and position they are applying for.

We believe wholeheartedly that taking this 3 step approach to the pre-hire process can not only weed out the toxic candidates, but also identify potential superstars to help move your organization forward!

Info Quest, Incorporated

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812 South Poplar Drive, Suite 8
Surfside Beach, SC 29575
800-507-9628 | 843-233-9675

   

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