14 Toxic Habits That Make You Less Likable At Work

You only need to be fired or reprimanded once before you're terrified of being a negative force in the office. There's always someone who's got a bad rap for being negative, for being late, for being lazy, for being selfish or arrogant, for being the first to shoot down an idea or the first to brag, for being perpetually sick or taking advantage of time off. You don't want to be that person. And if you don't watch your behavior carefully, little things you do without noticing can add up and paint you in an unsavory light and jeopardize your career.

It's always a good time to refresh your attitude in the office. It's never too late to make more of an effort, to be more social, to make stronger connections and increase the quality of your work. The last thing you want is to be misunderstood and labeled a toxic employee. Even if you don't plan on staying at your current job, it's always important to leave with a solid recommendation.

So take a moment to think about your role in the office and how people see you. If you are guilty of any of these bad habits, make a serious effort to change the way you behave — it could affect the rest of your professional life.

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Saying It's Not Your Job

Yes, everyone has a specific position with particular responsibilities, but part of having a job with a company is being adaptable and helping out when needed. If you're constantly being asked to do a task that's not in your job description, schedule a time to talk to your boss about it. But simply putting your hands up and refusing to do a task because it's not what you signed up for makes you stand out as inflexible and unhelpful.

Refusing To Respect Seniority


Sometimes having to behave a certain way around your seniors can be a drag. You might believe your ideas as a first year employee are on the same level as people who have been at the company for a decade. And maybe you're right. But we all have to play the game and pay respect where it's due. Sometimes waiting until your opinion is requested is the best way to share it. You don't want to come across like you have an issue with authority — that's never an attractive quality in an employee.

Being A Follower

It can be a confusing line to walk, the divide between being a teammate and being an individual, but try your best to walk it. You don't want to be known as part of a herd, you want to be respected for your individuality. So if all of your cube mates decide to protest a new hire and you don't agree, don't follow their lead.

Reporting To The Wrong Person

When you have important news to share, make sure it goes directly to the person it's intended for. Your boss is going to think less of you if you make a habit out of testing out information on people it's not intended for.

Keeping Your Boss Out Of The Loop


If you're thinking about taking a week off during a busy time, don't tell every single one of your friends before you tell your boss. Not reporting to your boss out of fear is the fastest way to make them not respect you. Always gather the courage to go to them first. It shows courage and maturity.

Giving Someone The Silent Treatment

If you're having an issue with someone, don't ignore them. Even if you're so angry you can't unclench your jaw, don't give them the silent treatment. It's immature, it's passive aggressive, and it solves nothing. If you have an issue with anyone in the office, ask to speak with them privately and work it out.



Gossiping can be hard to resist. It's a fun distraction during the day and everyone is guilty of it. But you don't want to get a reputation as the person who's always talking about other people's business. It will make you seem catty and untrustworthy. You don't always need to repeat what you hear.

Being A No-Show

If you've been feeling sick and missing a lot of work, be an adult and go to the doctor and get it sorted out — not just for your job's sake, but for your own.

Not Being A Team Player


You can't be a team player 100 percent of the time, but when you have a chance to help someone else out, do a favor, or pay it forward, do it. A small favor can go a long way and help you represent yourself as a committed and generous employee.

Refusing To Socialize

You might not love your coworkers, but you don't have to. You should, however, find some common ground and make a concerted effort to socialize. This doesn't mean you have to do happy hour every week, but maybe try to go once a month. People want to work with people they enjoy being around, so to some extent, being friendly is always part of the job.

Putting Down The Company

Everyone gets frustrated with their workplace every now and then. But if you find yourself having nothing but negative things to say for an extended period of time, think about leaving. And do it without leaving a bad taste in everyone's mouth. It's never appropriate to bash your place of work, so figure out how you feel about it and plan accordingly.

Not Getting To Know People


Like I said, it's not your job to be everyone's best friend, but if you want to keep the office vibes light and positive, you should take the time to at least introduce yourself to everyone in your office. It will make you appear approachable and you never know what office friendships might hold. Sit out the softball game if you want, but at least show up to the pizza party.

Close-Mindedness To Other's Opinions

It's important to be open-minded inside and outside of the office. When you open yourself up to other's opinions, you expand your own horizons. You should always be learning at work, and the best way to do that is to hear from others.

Dark Cloud Attitude


There's always a dark cloud in the office. Don't be that person. Don't be the person who's always in a bad mood, who always has something negative to say, and who's always ready to leave first. Just don't be that person. If you're that unhappy, find another job.

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