Labour & Employment Law Blog

Toxic Work Culture Tops List of Resignation Factors

Zeilikman Law

Zeilikman Law

A new study uncovers a rude awakening for employers.

Often, employers spend so much of their time and resources focusing on external factors affecting their companies that internal issues can fly under the radar. However, workplace culture is something that will have to be taken much more seriously. This comes after studies have found that company culture is 10.4 times more likely to damage the relationship between employee and employer than compensation.

The fascinating insight comes from the research of Culturex and their analysis of 1.3 million Glassdoor reviews about why employees left their jobs. The researchers, looking to find answers as to what drives attrition, were shocked at their findings. “The topic that rose right to the surface, which was the most powerful driver that we found by far, was a toxic culture,” says co-founder of Culturex, Charles Sull.

The findings held true across many industries including those in front-line work and in office jobs. Elements found to keep employees satisfied with their positions included predictable work schedules, job growth and recognition for achievements.

Now we are aware that this is an issue affecting many industries. What are elements of a toxic work culture? This was defined by researchers as a workplace that consists of one or many of the following characteristics; abusive leadership, a relentless environment, job insecurity, discrimination and harassment.

Alongside these factors are confusing and complicated responses to COVID-19 taken by employers. Companies issuing clear plans were found to have much more content employees.

What does this mean for employers?

The study may appear as a harsh reality, but it also represents a brighter future of awareness. Sull states that there are many steps an employer can take to help make a workplace a much safer and accepting environment.

To start, lateral career opportunities are extremely important to employees. Developing new strategies and ways for workers to be compensated for their hard work is something that is shown to increase enthusiasm and satisfaction.

Another interesting insight is that workplace social events are shown to have extremely positive effects. Since the pandemic has made these events so difficult, many employers have implemented virtual events and activities to keep employees communicating and connected. This is a simple and powerful step for employers to take during times as difficult and isolating as the pandemic. It also shows teams that they are recognized and supported.

Schedule predictability was also proven to be a major issue across industries. In an effort to help employees with this issue, it is communication that seems to be the biggest indicator. This includes informing remote working individuals of a clear plan that outlines their work schedules.

Lastly, issues of abuse, harassment and discrimination of any kind are all too real. Unfortunately, these were also top concerns for employees. As an employee or employer, the only real way to confront these issues is to take action. Some workplace behavior is completely unacceptable and it must be dealt with by either HR or an external team of professionals.

With any issues of a hostile workplace culture, there is always help available. If you or anyone you know is experiencing these difficulties do not hesitate to request a consultation or call us at 905-417-2227 to get your answers.

The above article is for general information purposes only, does not constitute legal advice or create a solicitor-client relationship. Because each case is unique and factually driven, if you have concerns with regard to the foregoing issues, please make an appointment with one of our lawyers or a qualified legal practitioner elsewhere. We represent clients in the Greater Toronto Area including Toronto, North York, Markham, Vaughan, Thornhill, Newmarket, Aurora, Brampton, Mississauga, Barrie, Ajax, Whitby, Pickering and Oshawa.