Workplace Zombies: How To Avoid The Living Dead


Zombies in the workplace are soul-sucking, money-draining, productivity-killing entities that chip away at an organization’s spirit and its engagement levels one convert at a time. These creatures often look like the rest of us, but deep down they’re cancerous beasts that can potentially drive a business to ruin.

Identify Workplace Zombies
Although zombies come in many varieties, most resemble one or more of the following: 

Negative zombies: Often the easiest to spot, they complain, moan, and express their dissatisfaction regularly. Some will use humor to disguise their disgust, but they are nevertheless contagious and a threat to the uninfected.

Minimum-contributor zombies: They do the basics but nothing more. You will never see them looking for work or volunteering for projects. Furthermore, many act as if they are doing you a favor when you ask them to perform a task they get paid for doing.

Status-quo zombies: These change-averse creatures dig in their heels and fight the future. They are happy with everything the way it is and take no initiative to implement new ideas. 

Shortcut zombies: They find ways to cut corners and circumvent processes. Their choices frequently expose the organization to unneeded risk. Worse still, when these zombies are in charge of training others, they pass on bad habits and poor practices.

How To Protect Yourself From Workplace Zombies

The dead-eyed, slack-jawed masses of zombie workers should terrify us more than any horror film. What movies won’t tell you is this: each of us is a “carrier” of the zombie contagion. There’s no suspenseful moment of bite-and-transform. It’s subtle, and silent. If you’re not careful, zombie-brain can sneak up on you. 
If you let complacency creep in, stop challenging yourself to excel, the hollowness can overtake you. When you settle for a routine instead of building your skills and planning for what’s next, you surrender by default. Adventure over.

Here are a few ways for you to avoid being affected from workplace zombies:
- Stay alert, be agile and keep moving.  Never stand still, mentally or physically.
- Staying positive to avoid infection is the surest way to prevent you becoming one of them.
- Avoid becoming paired or grouped with them for any special projects or initiatives where ever possible.  Drive your own initiatives and volunteer for everything that interests you.
- Socialise and associate with the ‘can do’ or positive crowd in the company.   
- We have to stick together.  Splitting up is always a bad idea in any situation and it is the same at work.  Let’s work together on either neutralising or ultimately curing them.

*Source: Perry Jackson/