What Are The Ways To Overcome Complacency In The Workplace

An organization risks being absorbed by the competition when its members lose interest in their work. Additionally, if staff members aren’t pushed to succeed, their morale will suffer, impacting the whole company. Discover tips on instilling a sense of urgency in your organization’s members as you continue reading.

Employees who are complacent in the workplace tend to tune out, stop thinking, and go through the motions. The worker switches to “autopilot” and completes their tasks without being aware of or paying attention to them.

In our workplaces, we are regularly guilty of doing this. When it becomes a common practice, the issue worsens significantly.

Employee Complacency Warning Signs

Because managers frequently cannot stop complacency in its tracks, it is known as the silent killer of success in the workplace. You might be perplexed when an otherwise excellent employee leaves or things suddenly stop moving forward. Additionally, it can be challenging to confront because signs can be arbitrary. No significant error or financial loss can be attributed to a single person. Therefore, managers and business owners must be proactive in watching for the signs to combat complacency at work.

  1. Disinterested: a lack of or low level of zeal, the appearance of merely going through the motions; modest dress
  2. Lacks initiative: a lack of initiative, teamwork, and engagement in meetings or company events
  3. Resists Change: Reacts negatively to potential outcomes before even hearing them, resists change, and has an “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” attitude.
  4. Cuts Corners: from being detail-oriented to feeling entitled rather than adhering to procedures
  5. Zones out: does not ask many questions, doodles, texts at inappropriate times, and appears unable to recall what was discussed.
  6. Displays Symptoms of Being Overwhelmed: appears anxious, insecure, and stressed out due to a heavy workload
  7. Acts Frustrated: Demonstrates a sense of resentment; refuses to accept responsibility for their unhappiness or discontentment with their job
  8. Avoids opportunities for self-improvement: no longer sees the need to continue investing in their career growth

How To Overcome The Organizational Complacency?

How can organizations combat complacency, which harms worker morale, client relationships, and a company’s overall viability? Examples of proactive ways to create urgency and avoid opting for business strategies that do not promote growth include the subsequent four suggestions.

  1. Rectify bad behaviors

Sometimes workers are unaware that they have formed a bad habit. To spot and address these bad habits, it is a good idea for managers or coworkers to observe and mentor other employees.

  1. Conduct a job hazard analysis (JHA)

A JHA helps determine the most clever approaches to work safely and productively. It is crucial to involve several people in the analysis, starting with the person carrying out the task to assess any potential risks related to the task. You could endanger yourself by creating a task hastily or failing to consider the steps carefully. Additionally, it gets your mind thinking about the task ahead of time.

  1. Discuss change

When people are complacent, they have difficulty remembering or recognizing when change has occurred. To stimulate the mind, it is crucial to bring up change frequently. Ensure hold weekly company-wide safety meetings where we discuss subjects like near misses and determine the root cause, as well as further discuss changes that are taking place so they are well communicated, and their effects are recognized.

  1. Alter your routine

Rotate employees’ job duties to prevent them from consistently carrying out the same task. This will aid in keeping the worker engaged and help them avoid becoming complacent.

  1. Encourage your staff to create value

Once workers have mastered their positions, look for ways to help them contribute more to the business and their position. Promote employee coaching and mentoring to improve safety, output, and quality. This keeps the worker focused on their work and considering how they can improve it. They could also encourage their coworkers to participate.


Workplace complacency is a common occurrence that various factors can bring on. It may cause multiple issues for the business as a whole as well as for everyone’s morale.

Before you know it, your level of engagement and enthusiasm for your work has increased. Fortunately, as we’ve learned, numerous strategies for overcoming complacency at work exist. Keep an eye out for the warning signs and make the necessary corrections.

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