There are some workplaces that are like a real life Game of Thrones. You have the backstabbing, the spies, the drama, the gossip. Notice how I listed all of these things and yet I didn’t mention the thing you are being paid to do, which is work. Why is the workplace like this? It comes down to two reasons.

The first is, many managers and department heads ignore the company’s mission statement and values and impute their values throughout their department and or the company. I have a friend that has been with a particular company for eight years. When they originally were hired, the company’s values and work ethic was strong. Co-workers did their jobs, helped one another and even shared resources. It was the true definition of a team.

Management changed and the new manager came in and it is the complete opposite. Now you have undermining, inexperienced employees promoted to roles they are not capable of doing, employees stealing others work, spying and tons of other drama. Many employees have left and my friend along with two others are the only ones that do their jobs and remain. The new management has placed people that reflect his values in a supervisor role and those people have hired people who are a reflection of them. In essence a bad copy making copies of itself. This in turn creates a dysfunctional work environment.

The second issue which many companies overlook is having a strong communications liaison. This person should be able to foster the companies’ mission statement and make sure there is an adequate flow of communications between the employee and management. Guaranteeing everyone is on the same page and the company culture is a positive one. However many companies lack a communications liaison that actually do this. In turn employees get mixed messages from management which causes confusion and anger. Meanwhile the employer is in an ivory tower not aware of what is brewing under them. 

Workplace dysfunction is avoidable but if organizations hire leaders that come in and hijack their mission statement and values to replace it with their own values, while not having a strong communications liaison in place you will have a poor company culture. Poor company culture results in people giving you the bare minimum and eventually leaving.