“One bad apple spoils the barrel.” Intuitively we know this maxim is true. Research at the University of Washington Business School affirms it.
Will Felps, Terence Mitchell and Eliza Byington defined three types of bad apples:
• Slackers who don’t do their share of the work
• Perennially unhappy pessimists
• Mean-spirited bullies
The researchers found that team members will first try moral suasion with a “bad apple” co-worker. If that fails, they’ll complain to bosses or take other steps in the attempt to expel the person from the team. But often they lack the power to do so.