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Indicators of a Hostile Work Environment


Sometimes work environments become hostile over time. And often there are indicators the company culture is shifting. This can be seen within businesses that are overlooking unacceptable conflicts between staff, coworkers, and supervisors.

Hostile work environments are bad for a business as many employees leave their positions or take sick days to avoid hostility. There are legal options for individuals who are faced with repeated issues at work, talk to a Coumbus employment lawyer about your concerns.

What Types of Behaviors Contribute to Hostile Workplaces

If you have been lucky enough to avoid terrible work environments, chances are you know someone who has experienced an uncomfortable environment in an office, retail store, or factory. To move forward legally, it needs to be proven there was intimidating, offensive, or discriminatory behavior. Abuses that created an environment in which an employee was unable to perform their job effectively.

Examples of hostile behaviors:

  • Cruel and discriminatory comments
  • Insulting nicknames
  • Threats or sabotage
  • Physical touch that is unwanted
  • Images that are pornographic or intimidating
  • Sexual harassment

As a note, the hostility has to be motivated by a basis for which the employee is protected, such as age, race, gender, pregnancy, disability, military status, color, national origin, or gender. When these behaviors occur, how you and your attorney can move forward depends on the situation. Talk with an Ohio employment lawyer, together you can determine if the situation warrants legal action.

Abusive Workplaces Can Be Harmful to Your Physical Health

Jobs can be demanding and take a lot of time out of an individual’s personal life, but victims of a hostile work environment commonly find themselves unable to strike anything close to a healthy balance between personal and professional time.

For example, people may be a bit blue on Sunday night because the weekend is coming to an end, but if you find yourself dreading Monday again and again, and obsessing about the type of behavior you are going to encounter, it may be because the work environment is hostile.

There are also times when people in your personal life, your friends and family, notice a shift in your personality because of what you have experienced at work. People with normally upbeat attitudes may find themselves becoming withdrawn and cynical. Repeated abuse can be extremely harmful to a person’s physical and mental health.

If you are ready to file a complaint, a lawyer can walk you through the process. Talk to an attorney. They may suggest talking to someone within your workplace initially. Then, if an official complaint is the best course of action, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission will be contacted.

Ideally, every worker would be employed in a safe, healthy environment. Unfortunately that is not always the case. Legal moves can be made when the abusive workplace behaviors were based on race, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, religion, pregnancy, age, disability, or other discriminatory practices. The behavior also needs to be proven as pervasive and severe.

Are you ready to stand up for your rights? For a free and confidential consultation with a Columbus employment lawyer, reach out and schedule a time to talk to our experienced legal professionals. The team at Coffman Legal LLC is committed advocates for all Ohio workers. Call 614-949-1181 today.


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