Character and Crisis: Toxic Workplaces and Culture Change


  • Michelle A. Grace


organizational crisis, toxic workplace, organizational culture, toxic employee, NASA Challenger crisis, Theranos, whistleblowing, BMW emissions scandal, flat organization, tall organization, culture change, Attraction, Selection, Attrition, ASA, Bear Model, Beliefs, Experiences, Actions, and Results


No workplace is perfect, but anyone with co-workers knows that office culture is the difference between a job that you love and a place that you dread! Toxic workplaces can make the most dedicated employee lose productivity, disengage from the culture, and even leave the company. Extreme cases of a toxic culture sometimes lead to the end of the organization. Understanding the characteristics of a toxic employee or workplace can help identify the issues and work toward fixing the problem. This article explores toxic situations and strategies that people of good character can employ to remedy the situation.

Listen to an episode about this article from the Wendt Character Initiative's podcast, Character Explorations: