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Workplace Zombies: Are They Coming For You?

Posted by EHS Insight Staff on October 25, 2019 at 10:54 AM

Zombies are everywhere nowadays. Whether it’s movies like “Zombieland”, television shows like “The Walking Dead”, or books like “World War Z”, we’re obsessed with these slow but deadly horror villains that hunger for our brains.

But enjoying zombie horror is one thing — living it is another. If you’ve got an infestation of workplace zombies, you know exactly what we’re talking about.

Wait, What? Workplace Zombies?

You heard us right. Workplace zombies are a real thing! So maybe they won’t literally rise from their graves and come looking to chow down on your gray matter, but nevertheless they’re a danger in every work environment. This is because they don’t just make their own lives miserable but bring down everyone else they come into contact with on a given day.

Workplace zombies are easy to spot. Anyone you share an office with that just seems to suck the joy out of being at work has likely been zombified. Do you feel like you just ran a marathon after interacting with them? Would you rather not come into work at all if it meant not having to deal with them? Congratulations: you’ve got zombies in the workplace.

Shuffling Through Their Day

Workplace zombies do more than just bring down company morale — they are an active drain on a business, and in more ways than one. This is why it’s so important to keep workers engaged while they’re on the job. Employees who don’t want to be at work, those who are just there because they’ve got nothing else better to do and figure they’ll at least earn a paycheck for their troubles, can turn even the most well-functioning company into a decrepit husk of its former glory.

Just like real zombies, workplace zombies tend to infect others around them with their apathy. This reduces productivity by a major margin, and that spells bad news for any business. Good workers flee bad work environments, and this means your turnover is going to be a lot higher if you harbor zombies in your workforce. Not only that, but studies show that disengaged, zombified workers tend to not take care of themselves as much, resulting in more missed days of work and heightened health costs. Workplace zombies are truly a recipe for disaster!

Driving Back the Zombie Horde

Sadly, this isn’t the movies. Instead of removing the head or destroying the brain, you’ll need to use some kinder, gentler methods to drive back your own personal zombie horde. In this case, engagement is key. Even a worker who seems incredibly motivated at hiring can succumb to zombification, so it’s important to take good care of your employees and ensure that they’re motivated to work in order to stave off an infestation of the walking dead in your workplace.

Keeping workers engaged and involved can be a challenge, of course. Yet the benefits you’ll receive from having a workforce that is devoid of any shuffling zombies is well worth the effort — an engaged employee is one that is happy to show up every day and go the extra mile. Workers like that are priceless. Plus, they won’t try to eat your brains!

Topics: Workplace Health and Safety, Safety Culture, Human Resources

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