The personality traits which could harm your business

According to recent research from CV-Library, 66.8 per cent of workers believe people who aren?t liked struggle to get ahead at work. And this is not too surprising. It?s only natural to want to be liked, especially at work when you?re dealing with lots of different people and their?personality traits. But, as the line between our personal and professional lives becomes increasingly hazy, it?s important that businesses of all shapes and sizes promote a professional working atmosphere and do not allow members of staff to get too caught up with the office politics.

In fact, our study explored some of the personality traits which make a person more, and less, likeable at work and it brought about some interesting findings. If not handled correctly, some of the least desirable attributes could quickly turn your workplace into a toxic environment. Below I explore the top five traits which make a person less liked at work in more detail, and explain how they could harm your business.

(1) Arrogance

This topped the list of the worst personality traits someone could have and it is not surprising. An employee that is condescending to team members and refuses to admit to any mistakes will do nothing to motivate their colleagues or work with them to achieve a common goal. While arrogance can sometimes be mistaken for confidence (which can be beneficial amongst workers) if permitted to continue this could quickly anger the rest of your workforce, forcing them to look for a new job, elsewhere.


It goes without saying that any business will have busier periods, so an employee who is unwilling to take on extra work during these times could unfortunately drive down your productivity. Everyone has to pull their weight at work, whether they like it or not, and if not handled correctly this could result in a great amount of resentment from your employees that are picking up the pieces handed to them by a lazy co-worker.

(3) Being patronising

An employee that causes conflict between team members and does not effectively coach members of staff correctly could also harm your business. No-one appreciates being talked down to, regardless of what level they are at so it?s important not to promote this kind of attitude as acceptable. Keep a close eye on how your staff are speaking to one another and make sure your HR team is reporting back to you on any misdemeanours that are taking place.

(4) Being controlling

While we can all get stuck in our ways, it?s important to welcome, and try out, new ideas. An employee that is controlling i.e. does not let go of work, want to help others or try new things can quickly become damaging to your organisation. Creating a culture which is honest and open and welcomes new ways of thinking is the only way to stay ahead and get the most out of your workforce.

(5) Vulgarity

Everyone likes to have a laugh in the office (we?re only human after all!), but acting unprofessionally in the workplace is not, and should not, ever be acceptable. Any vulgar behaviour promotes all the wrong messages to your staff and could make other employees feel uncomfortable. Pay particular attention to management as any behaviour that stems from the top can unfortunately filter down to more junior members of the team.

You should be able to get to grips with someone?s personality during the recruitment process, but that?s not to say that the above culprits can?t slip through the net. Stay on top of it or risk your business falling victim.

Lee Biggins is founder and managing director of CV-Library

Image: Shutterstock

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