HR 101

Workplace Detox: Bouncing Back from a Toxic Hire

May 09, 2019

Hiring is difficult, and sometimes organizations make mistakes. In the best case, the employee quickly realizes that the job is not for them, and they resign to find a better opportunity. In the worst case, the employee lingers, failing to achieve in their role and even making it difficult for other employees to get their work done.

A bad hire might even be worse than unproductive—they could have a toxic effect on the workplace, bringing strife and conflict into what was formerly a harmonious environment. Whatever specific effects a bad hire has on your workplace, the best option is to act quickly and use formal coaching and performance management to try to correct the issues. If this fails, or if escalation is warranted due to their behaviour, enact progressive discipline. The longer you wait, the more damage the bad hire could do.

While you may believe that the employee leaving is the end, the damage isn’t necessarily over after the employee’s departure. A bad hire being removed from the organization doesn’t magically fix the trouble they caused as an employee. They may have damaged relationships internally and externally, and overall made it difficult to get back to how things were before they arrived, let alone make improvements.

A bad hire doesn’t necessarily mean you’re bad at hiring. It can sometimes mean there are processes you have in place that didn’t work as you would have expected. It’s easy to overlook some steps when you are desperately trying to find a qualified candidate, or you are overly excited about a candidate. This shows the importance of a hiring process and why each task is necessary. For example, if you didn’t check references, you could miss the opportunity to determine if someone has great skills but wouldn’t be a good fit for your team. Ensuring you have an up-to-date procedure for hiring can help identify important tasks that could easily be missed.

Recovering from a bad hire takes effort and focus, but is necessary to restore trust and teamwork. Download our FREE Bad Hire Survival Guide, which provides steps you can take to mend relationships and ensure it doesn’t happen again.

Download Now

While HRdownloads uses reasonable efforts to maintain this site/blog and its Services in an up-to-date fashion, it does not warrant the completeness, timeliness or accuracy of any information contained on this site/blog or any of its Services, whether in English or French, and may make changes thereto at any time in its sole discretion without notice. All information and Services provided by HRdownloads are provided to members and/or users “as is”, “with all faults,” “as available” and at the sole risk of members and/or users. Our human resources information and recommendations are based on seasoned, best practice field experience and should not be construed as legal advice.