Human Resources Training, workplace conflict resolution

Toxic Work Behaviors Erode the Patient Experience (More Than You May Know!)


Did you know that toxic people are present not only at the corporate workplace, but are found even in healthcare settings? In such core sectors, their impact is all the more negative, where they can vitiate a vital aspect of this sector such as patient safety.

Mitchell Kusy, world-renowned consultant and keynote speaker who has helped hundreds of organizations nationally and internationally-helping create work cultures of respectful engagement impacting individual, team, and bottom-line performance, carried out vital research along with his research colleague on what toxic employees bring to the organization.

In this three-year national study which involved over 400 individuals, Dr. Kusy found out some highly insightful aspects of toxic behavior in the medical sector:

  • Disruptive behaviors cause around four fifths medical professional to cause medication errors
  • Around half of all nurses reported patient errors as a direct result of physician abuse
  • Two thirds of these interviewed at this research reported lateral abuse, i.e., from nurse to nurse, and nearly four fifths reported suffering from vertical abuse, i.e., physician to nurse
  • Around half of the sample said they are unable to handle the incivility
  • Around a third of nurses who quit the sector say it is due to the direct fallout of having to deal with toxic people
  • Around half of the medical errors is due to intimidation, and is the cause of around a quarter of the total patient mortality.


Want to hear from the expert himself on these brilliantly insightful points? A webinar from TrainHR, a leading provider of professional training for the human resources areas, offers you the opportunity to do so.

It is organizing a webinar on May 6, at which none other than Dr. Kusy himself will be the speaker. He will share the wealth of his findings with participants at this 90-minute session. Please enroll for this invaluable learning by logging on to .

This webinar has been approved for 1.5 HR (General) recertification credit hours toward aPHR, PHR, PHRca, SPHR, GPHR, PHRi and SPHRi recertification through HR Certification Institute (HRCI).


If the above points resulting from Dr. Kusy’ s research are alarming, here is more:

  • Only between one and six out of hundred people targeted by a colleague’s incivility ever filed complaints
  • More than nine out of ten leaders say they have worked with toxic people
  • More than nine out of ten interviewed at this research gave a rating of between 7 and 10 for incivility on a 10-point scale
  • Nearly half of them said the same person showed uncivil behavior repeatedly, at the rate of 2-3 times per week
  • Uncivil behavior is the reason for which half of the victims said they would likely leave their job rather than endure the ignominy.

At this learning session, which is aimed at core personnel in the healthcare industry who are most likely to deal with uncivil behavior, such as Chief Nursing Officer, Nurse Leads, Medical Leaders, Nurses, Physicians, Ancillary Healthcare Professionals, HR Healthcare Leaders and Healthcare Administrators, Dr. Kusy will cover the following areas:

  • How toxic people reduce patient safety
  • How toxic people erode team performance
  • What to do about toxic providers who are organizational stars
  • How to avoid hiring toxic people
  • What to do once a toxic individual is there
  • Why feedback to toxic people often fail
  • How to coach a toxic peer, toxic boss, or toxic direct report
  • Patient areas as a result of a toxic person.


About the speaker: A 2005 Fulbright Scholar in Organization Development, Dr. Mitchell Kusy is a professor in the PhD. Program, Graduate School of Leadership & Change, Antioch University. At the hundreds of organizations he has consulted with or been a keynote speaker nationally and internationally; he has helped to create work cultures of respectful engagement impacting individual, team, and bottom-line performance.

His latest book is “Why I Don’t Work Here Anymore: A Leader’s Guide to Offset the Financial and Emotional Costs of Toxic Employees”. Prior to this, Mitch co-authored five business books, one of which has been a best-seller. In 1998, he was named Minnesota Organization Development Practitioner of the Year.

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