Toxic Employees & Internet Trolls Are Destroying Over Half of British Businesses – A Case Study, Lighthouse International Group
By Jai Singh, Associate Partner, Lighthouse International Group
Knowingly or unknowingly hiring toxic employees can cost an average company of 1,000 people over $1.2 million a year (£885,000) and British Businesses are losing £30,000 a year to internet trolls. Companies have a responsibility to act.
For the last 12 months, Lighthouse International Group has experienced defamatory online trolling from ex-Associates and from toxic families of the people we mentor, coach and counsel to heal from often horrific abuse. This has cost the business upwards of £1 million in time, man-hours and lost clients but it is emerging much stronger for it. Lighthouse has hundreds of pages of documented evidence to support this and we are launching this campaign to help other businesses and individuals learn from our experience.
The team at Lighthouse International Group are now launching Business Against Trolls to help companies handle toxic employees who troll businesses both from within and outside of the company. Many companies are unable to and indeed terrified of how to handle this exponentially growing problem.
In 2016, over half of British Businesses have said they have had their reputation damaged by online trolls according to Igniyte The Reputational Experts.
- More than half (52%) of UK companies have experienced a decline because of postings online in the last 12 months.
- 1 in 5 (21%) admitted they are terrified of the damage that further negative content could do – potentially destroying their company for good – up from 1 in 6 two years ago.
- 1 in 10 (11%) reported that they feel the situation is getting worse.
- Nearly half (47%) have been affected by malicious posts and trolls in the past year.
- Another 1 in 10 (10%) feel the landscape is becoming trickier to manage and 1 in 8 – 12% – of those affected say they don’t know how to make things right.
Paul Waugh Chairman of Lighthouse International Group said:
“We have had two people in the past year who have been online trying to cause us damage; individually and as an organisation. They are both still employed by their respective employers.
Companies need to start realising where they stand when it comes to people causing damage online… causing their people, their children, their families, and their reputation damage online and are employed by that company. Companies now need to teach people and let them know where they stand if they’re going to work for them when it comes to trolling. They need to take a stand.”
Charlie Mullins, founder of Pimlico Plumbers told the Telegraph in 2015:
“With the invention of social media, the ability of a bad word to seriously damage your business has increased exponentially. In the old days you could look the person giving the review in the eye and decide, based on what you know about them, whether they were being honest. But social media and review sites are the Wild West, thanks to the anonymity of users and the way site owners refuse to disclose the identities of those posting negative material.”
Lighthouse International Group is now actively engaging national and international media on the subject of dealing with toxic employees and online trolling. Paul Waugh was recently invited by ITV News to speak on the subject of online anonymity as part of its Parents Against Trolls campaign which has launched alongside Business Against Trolls.
Notes for Editors
Lighthouse International Group was founded in 2004. We are a personal development organisation specialising in mentoring, coaching, counselling and leadership training. We also specialise in building support communities for people who have come out of extremely abusive families and have nowhere to go after leaving.
Lighthouse International Group is the founding organisation of anti-trolling campaigns; Parents Against Trolls and Business Against Trolls. This is a very personal video introduction by Paul Waugh on the desperate need to protect children and adults from trolling.
Additional media commitments
Paul Waugh is available for interview and comment on any subjects related to personal growth, abuse, bullying, toxic employees, trolling and much more.
Additional Fact and figures
- Lighthouse International Group has worked with over 70,000 people over nearly 18 years with way less than 0.1% becoming core Associates.
- Those trolling Lighthouse International Group online are less than 0.01% of all the people it has had contact with.
Contact and email address
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