We all want to have successful careers that give us a feeling of fulfillment.
In our career paths we all hope to land jobs that will act as ladders to the coveted dream career.
This are the kind of jobs that not only pay well, but also offer an environment where we feel respected and valued for our input.
Contrary to expectation, we sometimes get a job whose outcome leaves more misery than blessings.
We often stick to such jobs because they may be paying us well thus we are able to settle our bills, however in the long run we realise that we lost more than we gained.
We spend most of our day at work. This time need to be spent in a conducive environment doing something that creates a win-win situation to both the employer and the employee.
If you have a job that leaves your physical health in turmoil and mental state disturbed thus spending most of your time unhappy then you have a perfect toxic job and it might be time to weigh your options and look for something better.
If you experience the following signs or symptoms in your job or general work environment, then it may be time to think otherwise because you certainly could be in a toxic job.
1. Your health suffers.
Do you consistently struggle to sleep at night or do you loose sleep at the thought of reporting to work next morning?
Does your body jerk automatically or just recoil in fear when you think about some of your workplace seniors whom you report to?
Do you notice that of late you have become easily irritable and cranky?
High blood pressure, gaining weight, anxiety, and insomnia are not only the clearest but also dangerous signs of a toxic job.
When the thought of work instills fear, discomfort and even sometime a sharp pain in your stomach region then you need to take some quick action.
Do not put your life on the line when the job is toxic, start planning the next move as soon as possible.
2. There is no work/life balance
Have you taken leave from work on a number of occasions only to be called back to the office and viola your leave break is over?
Do you on a consistent basis report to work in the morning darkness and leave when the next day’s hour is around the corner?
Do you have a boss who believes he/she has the right to disrupt your family weekend whenever they feel like and demand that you report to the office to sort out urgent business matters since the business pays you a big salary anyway?
Have the demands of your current job sucked all life out of you and all you know now is the office and nothing but the office?
Even worse, have you (if you are a lady) or your female colleague been asked to cut short their maternity break to come and attend to important business matters?
Sometimes the demands of a job can suck all the life out of you. It takes over all your life faculties that you have nothing left apart from chatting with your friends on whattsapp.
When you have an employer who cares less about work-life balance then this scenarios will be a common occurrence and soon you will be experiencing a serious burn-out.
Lack of work-life balance policy in an organization is a powerful sign of toxicity.
3. The general culture is toxic.
Are you working with an employer who constantly threatens you with a sack as a preferred form of motivation or has created an atmosphere where no one seems certain about their career path?
Could you also be in an organization where everything is last minute and the management style adopted is that of constant high pressure?
Do you always find that your personal moral values are in conflict with the organization values and direction?
Great organization create an environment and hire talent that work along the same grain with the firm to achieve great productivity.
Anything to the contrary speaks of a toxic situation.
4. You are being undervalued.
Have you tried to bring up new ideas only to be ignored or you got shut down disrespectfully?
Do you always burn the midnight oil to deliver results only to be told by your boss that after all you are paid to do that?
Are you in a workplace where you realise recognition is the preserve of a few senior executives with the rest of staff left to work in a thankless environment?
Well, this is not a dream. It is a wake up call that you are in a toxic environment.
You are basically working in an environment where you have beeon deprived off appreciation; one of the greatest need of your human soul.
5. There is no chance for advancement.
Sometimes we have to take on jobs that we least like in order to eventually get that which is our dream.
The biggest hope and expectation is at there will be room for advancement so that you can on a daily basis move closer to the ideal job.
One of the biggest motivation for being engaged is having a clear career progression path in the organization. Knowing in no uncertain terms that your input will lead to certain outcomes and justify your upward growth spurs positive employee engagement.
However if you find yourself in an organization where great performance is ignored and cronyism rewarded, then you should be wary.
When you employer resembles an “old boys” club that rewards friends then you have hit a toxic point and it may be wise to start thinking of growing outwards.
Nobody likes to work in a situation when they know there is no chance that they can advance within the company.
If you see a pattern of upper management hiring their friends instead of the more qualified candidates, then it is a sign that your company has a “good ole boys club,” and if you’re not in it, you might not ever advance out of your current role.
6. You’re getting abused.
Are you having a job where verbal abuse and shouting orders are a common day to day thing?
Are you having a boss who is turning female employees into corporate concubines?
Do you see clear evidence of a bully employer or senior employees who resort to threatening and demeaning others so that they can feel powerful?
And does the HR team turn a blind eye on the cases reported since the perpetrators are high performers?
Do not put up with this; get out of there VERY FAST.
Knowing when to walk away.
Quitting your job is stressful, and there’s always a risk you might end up somewhere worse. However, knowing when to walk away can be a valuable skill to have and one that leads you to a better place.
Remember growth is painful. Change is painful. But nothing is as painful as staying stuck somewhere you don’t belong.