From dealing with destructive gossip on a regular basis to having aggressive leaders, there are several common signs indicative of a toxic work environment. Although most organizations don’t choose to be dysfunctional, and many of them probably aren’t even aware that they are, it’s something that can be avoided if you know what to look for. If you’re frequently subjected to some of the following actions and emotions, then it may be time to start considering a fresh start with a different company.

1. You dread Sunday evenings.

Even though you might not be overly cheerful about the thought of returning to work on Monday morning, you shouldn’t be too anxious about it either. If you start fearing Sunday evenings, then there’s likely an underlying problem with your current employment situation. In many cases it’s due to a toxic work environment that you would rather avoid. If you don’t feel like it would be productive to try to change your situation from within your role, you may want to consider other opportunities.

2. You don’t like or respect your boss.

Not all leaders are created equally, and there are those who are unethical and choose to abuse their authority. Too many candidates wait until after they are hired to determine whether or not they like their bosses. But odds are that if you didn’t have any rapport with them during the interview process, you’re not going to respect them once you’ve been hired. Beware of self-absorbed leaders who are disorganized, unfocused, and fail to provide you with clear answers regarding your future with their organization.

3. You don’t feel like you are being fully utilized.

Nothing is more frustrating than when your professional potential gets overlooked. You should also be able see hope for career growth opportunity. Being stuck in your current role with no room for lateral or vertical advancement can turn toxic quickly.

4. You feel micromanaged.

Even though some micromanagement can be expected during a start-up or probationary period, it’s definitely not something that should persist too long. It places employees under unnecessary pressure and slows down productivity. Nobody enjoys working for a control freak, and if you can’t build your manager’s trust within the first few months, then it’s probably never going to change.

5. You don’t feel appreciated.

The work that you are doing should matter to someone in the organization. Workers are made to feel expendable in toxic working environments. Your contribution should be valued and if it’s not, then you are worth more than what you’re settling for.

6. Work is causing you physical stress and illnesses.

Hostile work cultures are unhealthy. Being constantly surrounded with negativity will lead to a diminished self-worth. It can also contribute to physical illness and anxiety including migraines, nausea, and a higher susceptibility of contracting colds and flus. Stay mindful of your mental wellbeing and keep your eyes open for a better work environment. You may even want to establish a relationship with a reputable recruiter to stay connected to new opportunities.


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