Pandek Logo Visit FACILITATION + TRAINING + COACHING Graphics include: picture of a women who is evidently displeased with her arms crossed and glaze towards the ground.  Article. AVOID THE SPREAD OF DISCONTENT IN YOUR WORKPLACE. Discontent, if left unchecked, could infect the team around them. Spot the signs and see what we recommend to help fix things.  Article release month: 

Avoid the spread of discontent in your workplace

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Avoid the spread of discontent in your workplace

In a recent article published by the BBC, author Bryan Lufkin talks about the ripple effect of an employee who is unhappy at their job (Click here to see the full article). He describes their discontent much as you would a virus, highlighting its contagious properties that, if left unchecked, could infect the team around them. This phenomenon has been coined “social contagion” by Hemant Kakkar, assistant professor of management and organisations at Duke University, US (Lufkin, 2021).  

We know that the opinions and attitudes of those around us can sway moods and perceptions. But, just as motivated, cheerful colleagues can inspire, disgruntled workers can shape the workplace negatively, creating an environment where workers learn to grow discontent for their work. These acts of discontent can be apparent and outspoken or more subversive, such as lying or stealing. Studies show that employees are more likely to engage in immoral acts if they work alongside others that commit such acts (Lufkin, 2021). That is why it is essential to resolve any conflicts and spot the signs early. We have designed this pamphlet as a guide with tips and tricks that you can immediately implement to try and prevent or dissolve discord within your workplace.  


Working from home isn’t a barrier to the spread. If people don’t turn on their camera, and don’t answer questions – that is a sign of disengagement. 


If you see people pulling out their laptops and doing all kinds of other work during a meeting – that can be a sign of disengagement.  


Mass quitting is taking place at your workplace. This speaks for itself – unhappy employees can end up looking for new jobs, in a phenomenon coined “turnover contagion”. 

(KELLY; LUFKIN, 2021) 


Sharing the vision – you need to ensure that staff are on the same journey together so they know where they are going and they are feeling part of something 

Create a culture that allows people to correct corrosive behaviours – harbour a positive work environment where people’s attitudes and behaviours can be questioned in a healthy way.  

Living the values – make them part of the conversation whether that’s incorporating them into the weekly meeting, comms and professional reviews. Making repeated reference back to the values and establish where they are being lived.  

Create collaborative work – projects that are interdepartmental is a fantastic way to ensure that organisations and teams are becoming cohesive, working towards similar goals or targets.  

Offer plenty of opportunities for feedback – when employees feel that they are part of or have a stake in the organisation than they are more likely to feel motivated by the work or enjoy it. Ask your staff for their opinions where possible and act on feedback with immediate effect where possible.  



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