Posts Tagged toxic

Is Your Workplace Verbally Toxic?

Is your workplace verbally toxic? Are you bullied at work? You are not alone. Help is available. Today’s workplace is more verbally toxic than ever before. The daily news is filled with stories of adult bullying. To combat today’s verbally toxic workplace, interpersonal and organizational communications expert, Dr. Mitch Carnell, has released the second edition of, Say Something Nice; Be a Lifter at Work. The book greatly expands the first edition.

“The ruckus nature of the recent presidential campaign gives rise to a need to combat the effects of bullying tactics,” Carnell said. “Some people feel that they now have a license to verbally abuse others.”

The small book gives directions on how to give and receive compliments. It lays down a brain map for those not accustomed to giving or getting compliments. There are examples that are ready to use and there are concrete suggestions for creating your own.

Carnell says that there is no work environment that cannot profit from being a more accepting, healthier place to work. On the other hand, compliments must be honest and timely.

Say Something Nice; Be a Lifter at Work is available from the author at 2444 Birkenhead Dr. Charleston, SC 29414 for $6.00 each plus postage . It will also be available on line at or www.Barnes&

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New Guide to Tame the Toxic Workplace Available

New Guide to Tame the Toxic Workplace

            Say Something Nice; Be a Lifter @ Work, provides a method for dealing with the ever more threatening workplace. It gives a pattern for co-workers to use in creating a friendlier, safer, more accepting work environment. Like its predecessor, Say Something Nice; Be a Lifter, provides words and complete sentences for workers to follow.

            For those who are timid or not sure what to say, Say Something Nice; Be a Lifter @ Work, offers step by step guidance. You can use the examples straight from the booklet or use the words to create your own compliments. Some people are afraid to give compliments or they worry that they might be misunderstood. This guide takes away that fear. There are no examples that would embarrass anyone or create any kind of discomfort. The words and sentences are listed in alphabetical order. There is also a page for you to create your own list.

            Dr. Carnell, the author, is the retired President/CEO of the Charleston, South Carolina Speech and Hearing Center, an adjunct professor of management in the Charleston Graduate Center of Webster University, and the creator of Say Something Nice Day and Say Something Nice Sunday. Say Something Nice; Be a Lifter @ Work is available from the author,,,, and

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We Can Change Our Workplace

            The workplace is at its most toxic level. Bullying, disrespect and hostility are rampant. The protracted economic meltdown has only served to make matters worse. The result is an unhealthy environment that is costing both employers and employees. Workers are not as efficient or effective. They accomplish less in the same amount of time. They waste more raw materials. They make more mistakes. They miss more days at work. There are more sick calls and more grievances. Burnout experienced by employees includes half of the workforce according to employers.

            These factors combine to cost the employer more. It is an unhealthy situation for all concerned. Many employers make the situation worse with threats both implied and overt. Many managers have adopted the attitude that you can quit because I can replace you before you make it out the door. Such practices are extremely expensive and counterproductive. Most jobs require more than a warm body. The situation does not end with the close of work. The toxic atmosphere travels home with workers and infects even more people and spreads to other workplaces. It invades social and community life. It goes viral on the internet and goes to school. It goes to houses of worship and to the playground. It flourishes at sporting events and on the highways. There is no place that is exempt from the verbal onslaught.

            The situation can and must be modified and reversed. We can’t wait for the economy to recover to take action. The recovery is slow and uneven. The need for change is urgent. The truth is that this is a do it yourself project. You and I must do it if it is to get done.

            Resolve to make the situation better. It starts with you. You do not need to wait for someone in authority to do it. Opt out of the blame game. Take responsibility to become an army of one to change things. Find ways to boost your employees, co-workers or supervisors. Yes, supervisors need encouragement and you might be astounded at the difference a sincere compliment could make. Say something nice, uplifting or encouraging to those around you. It may be hard at first, but you will find something that is right to compliment.  It is important that your comment is both honest and sincere. If saying something nice is asking too much, then resolve not to add to the toxicity. Do not say anything mean or demoralizing. Write a note and put it where you can see it easily to remind yourself. Make your work area a safe zone. Encourage and enlist others to join you. You have more influence than you know. You have more power than you might think. Take charge of the environments where you work and live.

            It is essential that you commit your resolve to writing; otherwise, it becomes simply wishful thinking. For the best chance of success enlist a friend that you trust. Empower that person to give you a signal when you slip into negative mode. The buddy system works well in so many situations because two are stronger than one. Envision a different workplace. Envision a negative free workplace. If we can create a smoke free environment, we can create a verbally safe workplace. Just as those who do not smoke can be damaged by a smoke filled environment, innocent bystanders can be damaged by a hostile verbal environment. Hostility, sarcasm, rudeness poison the atmosphere and makes it toxic for everyone. It is corrosive.

            Sign the pledge to foster and create a less toxic workplace. For the next 30 days I will say something nice, uplifting or encouraging to at least one person every day. The comment will be honest and sincere. I understand that comments that involve physical appearance are off limits.  I will keep a record for each day and note whether or not I kept the pledge and of any specific reactions directed related to the exercise.

            As mentioned earlier, if this is too great a hurdle to tackle at first then sign on for the non-contributing campaign. I pledge that during the next 30 days I will refrain from saying anything ugly, demeaning or derogatory to anyone in my workplace. If I need to offer correction, I will do it in a respectful manner. I will keep a record for each day and note whether or not I kept the pledge and any reactions directly related to the exercise.

            The verbally toxic workplace is nothing new. We can trace it to Genesis where we find Adam placed the blame for his eating the apple on Eve and God. “That woman that you gave me,” He thus created a hostile environment for both Eve and himself. The hostile workplace has a long history. What is new is the ever increasing technology through which the hostility is intensified and exported rapidly.






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Say Something Nice; Be a Lifter@Work

Say Something Nice; Be a Lifter @ Work, is ready for purchase. It gives specific instructions on how to create a better work environment. Dr. Oz calls today’s work environment toxic. It is up to each of us to change the atmosphere. Individual copies are $5.00 each and that includes mailing. There is also pricing for 10 copies or more.

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