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5 Toxic People Who Will Stunt Your Business Growth High-quality products and solid numbers can't compensate for the damage these toxic insiders can cause.

By Tyler Leslie Edited by Dan Bova

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.


When your business stops growing and your sales are down, your first instinct is to examine the numbers or take a hard look at your product line. But what if the numbers are solid and your products pass the test?

How much thought do you give the people who sell your products? Are they fully invested in your company and continually growing your business? Are they doing everything they possibly can to improve your company? Do they possess desirable traits to engage customers, or do people avoid being around them at all costs? Maybe it's time to make sure you have the right people and the right environment in your company.

A few types of people can disrupt your business growth. Read below to see how many you might recognize in your own company.

1. The know-it-alls.

I'm sure we've all encountered people in the workplace who think they have all the answers. They critique how everyone else performs certain tasks. It doesn't matter whether they're criticizing a manager or an employee. Know-it-alls always point out how the job could've been done better or how they would've done it differently.

In their eyes, they could easily run the entire company with no problems. Know-it-alls usually don't know very much, but they talk a big game. Make sure to cut any know-it-alls out of your company. They will only create problems for your team and your brand.

2. The unmotivated.

In my opinion, this is the most common culprit across every company. Unmotivated individuals will not help your business grow. They will do the minimum amount of work, putting forth baseline effort so they don't get fired. If extra work needs doing, they'll ignore the issue or try to find a shortcut to complete the task as soon as possible.

We all know what happens when you take shortcuts in business. As a leader, the best thing you can do is learn what motivates each employee. It's something different for everyone. Discover what drives your workers, and they'll go the extra mile to help grow your business.

Related: 4 Ways to Motivate Employees Without Budgeting Bigger Salaries

3. The insomniacs.

There is a huge misconception about sleep and building a company. Many people think you have to either lose sleep or sleep only a few hours a day -- after all, that's valuable time you could use to improve your business. That simply isn't accurate. Arianna Huffington, author of "The Sleep Revolution" and cofounder of the Huffington Post, believes the opposite: "By sleeping more, we become more competent and in control of our lives," she says.

The same is true of your workers. If an employee isn't getting enough sleep, you'll see an exhausted team member. Workers who lack energy for day-to-day living can't possibly do what's needed to help you grow your business. Make sure the people who surround you make well-balanced sleep patterns a priority. You want them at 100 percent, not 55 percent.

Related: Arianna Huffington: "Sleep Deprivation is the New Smoking"

4. The complainers.

Unfortunately, there are far too many of these types. Complainers readily tell others about their awful bosses or how they wish they had another job. If you allow complaining in your company, you will see overall morale decrease dramatically. And of course that affects your growth potential.

If you lead a company and get complaints that people don't like you, work on becoming a better person. But if the majority of people find you likeable and only a few constantly complain, it's time to part ways. Keeping these people within your business will contribute to creating a poor company culture.

5. The liars.

Maintaining customer trust tops the list for achieving business growth. Customers who trust you will continue to buy your products and will refer you to everyone they know. But if someone in your company consistently over-promises and under-delivers, that someone will drive away your customers. Liars typically exaggerate a product's benefits, all in the name of making a sale.

There's just one big problem: After the sale, the customer generally returns to get a refund and tells all their friends about their negative experience. Being honest with your customers is the best way to keep them coming back. If you hear too many customer complaints about a particular salesperson, cut ties before he or she damages your company's reputation.

Related: 8 Steps for Dealing With Angry Customer Complaints

Stunted growth isn't always about the quality of your product or how many calls your sales team makes. It could simply be that some of the people you hired to help you succeed actually are hindering your goals. Pay close attention to whom you bring aboard. They might just be costing you to lose business.

Tyler Leslie

Writer, speaker, manager of Addicted2Success.com

Tyler Leslie left his father's very successful family business in 2015 to chase after his own dreams. Leslie has been featured in SUCCESS Magazine, The Huffington Post and more. Leslie and his girlfriend Carla Schesser are speakers and help small businesses, bloggers or anyone that has something to say get their voice featured online. You can check out their website www.carlaandtyler.com. Leslie is also managing the motivational and personal development blog Addicted2Success.com.

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