“The world we have created is a product of our thinking; it cannot be changed without changing our thinking.” ― Albert Einstein.
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“A second type of simple sabotage requires no destructive tools whatsoever and produces physical damage, if any, by highly indirect means. It is based on universal opportunities to make faulty decisions, to adopt a noncooperative attitude, and to induce others to follow suit. Making a faulty decision may be simply a matter of placing tools in one spot instead of another. A non-cooperative attitude may involve nothing more than creating an unpleasant situation among one’s fellow workers, engaging in bickerings, or displaying surliness and stupidity.”
STRATEGIC SERVICES FIELD MANUAL No. 3, Office of Strategic Services, Washington, D. C. 17 January 1944
“According to economist Dylan Minor, writing in a Harvard Business School paper, toxic workers are so damaging to the bottom line that avoiding them or rooting them out delivers twice the value to a company that hiring a superstar performer does.” Read more at: http://phys.org/news/2015-12-toxic-coworkers-undercut-groups-destructive.html
Analyzing rarely available employment data on nearly 60,000 workers across 11 companies, the study focused on only the most egregious kinds of toxic behavior: conduct that resulted in a worker's termination. The data suggests that toxic people drive other employees to leave an organization faster and more frequently, which generates huge turnover and training costs, and they diminish the productivity of everyone around them.
Although not part of the study, Minor said client customer surveys indicate that toxic workers “absolutely” tend to damage a firm’s customer service reputation, which has a long-term financial impact that can be difficult to quantify, he said.
Who is most likely to be a toxic worker? The research shows three key predictors.
First, whether a person has a very high level of “self-regard” or selfishness. Because if such people don’t care about others, they’re not going to worry about how their behavior or attitude affects co-workers.
Second, feeling overconfident, which can lead to undue risk-taking. “Imagine you’re going to engage in some misconduct and steal something from your company. If you think the chance that you’re going to get away with it is much greater than it really is, … you’re more likely to engage in that conduct,” said Minor.
And lastly, if a person states emphatically that the rules should always be followed no matter what, watch out.
“That is kind of counterintuitive. In a simple world, we would just ask someone, ‘Do you always follow the rules?’ And if you do, then of course, you’re not going to ever break them. But I find very strong evidence in my study that those that say ‘Oh no, you should always follow the rules’—versus those that say ‘Sometimes you have to break the rules to do a good job’—that the people who say ‘I never break the rules’ are much more likely to be terminated for breaking the rules,” said Minor.
Getting rid of toxic workers is often difficult because they‘re also more likely to be high performers, or to be perceived as such, which can blunt or blind supervisors to the true depth of their impact on the workplace.
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“The danger when we operate wholly in a world of representations and images is that we begin to mistake that world for reality, and to believe that by manipulating symbols we can automatically change the reality they represent. We lose touch with the reality behind the symbols. Grisly death becomes collateral damage. Torture becomes enhanced interrogation. A bill to relax pollution controls becomes the Clear Skies Act. Defeat in Iraq becomes victory. War becomes peace. Hate becomes love. Freedom becomes slavery.” Read more at: http://truthseekers.cultureunplugged.com/truth_seekers/2011/01/the-ubiquitous-matrix-of-lies-1.html
“VCoin Glacier” adapted from viintage public domain images