Dear Folks,

Came across this interesting article.

Some food for thought for HR pros!

Read on.


By JoAnne Allen

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - One "bad apple" can spread negative behavior like a virus to bring down officemates or destroy a good team, according to a new study examining conflict in the workplace.

Negative behavior outweighs positive behavior, so a bad apple can spoil the whole barrel, but one or two good workers can't "unspoil" it, researchers at the University of Washington said in the current issue of the journal Research in Organizational Behavior.

"Companies need to move quickly to deal with such problems because the negativity of just one individual is pervasive and destructive and can spread quickly," said co-author Terence Mitchell, a professor of management and organization.

If a bad apple slips through screening in the hiring process, he or she should be placed to work alone as much as possible, the study's lead author, William Felps, said.

The study defines negative workers as those who do not do their fair share of the work, are chronically unhappy and emotionally unstable, or bully or attack others.

Felps said he was inspired to investigate workplace conflict by his wife's experience with a "bad apple" and what happened when the worker was out sick for several days.

"When he was gone my wife said the atmosphere of the office changed dramatically," Felps said. "People started helping each other, playing classical music on their radios, and going out for drinks after work. But when he returned to the office, things returned to the unpleasant way they were."

"He truly was the bad apple that spoiled the barrel," Felps said.

The researchers said they found that a single "toxic" or negative team member can be the catalyst for a group's downward spiral.

In a follow-up study, the researchers found the vast majority of the people they surveyed could identify at least one "bad apple" with whom they had worked and who had produced organizational dysfunction.

Hiring managers could head off the problem by being more thorough when screening potential employees, Felps said.

He recommends checking references and administering personality tests to weed out those who are "really low on agreeableness and emotional stability."

From India, Vadodara
perfect same thing was happening in my organistion and had to sack 2 of them coz we found they may spoil every others in the organisation. mahalakshmi HR
From India, Pune
Every office has one trouble maker or BAD APPLE, I know, when good people are surronded by one trouble maker, they usually feel at risk or danger, and that bad apple intenses the situation, makes worse the enviroment.
I want to add one good thing here, which many people out there don't know:
According to my own research; that bad apple, has many features, which one should know, cos, bad apples tries to decieve others:
1) Bad apple has complaining nature
2) He works with conspiracy management
3) He has personality disorder
4) He mocks or makes fun of others
5) He usually tries to fish in the troubled water
6) He shows him self as a picture of sincerity and moralness
7) He always assume about other
8) He does back biting (specailly about seniors)
9) He stabbs every body
10) He has high career aspiration
11) He can never be faithful with any one
Beware of this cannible and If any body wants to deal with this kind of guy , drop me the line I'll tell you How to flush him

From China
Dear Mr. AdaMs, I have been facing a the same problem mentioned in your post. Plz let me know how to deal with such personality.
From India
ya i agree that one bad apple destroy the whole basket before he or she try to destroy the things we should expell from the organisation . it is not the only case of an organisation or it can be in any place like college etc. this type of people try to his or her revenge from others . From destroy to others he or she take revenge. i think we should punished them in front of other. From do this nobody never try to this type of thing again.
From India, Pune

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