One-third of employees work with competitive colleagues

The competitive spirit is alive and kicking in the UK’s workplaces, according to research commissioned by Investors in People.

More than one-third of employees surveyed claimed they work with colleagues who are very or fairly competitive.

The study of 1,986 workers conducted by pollsters YouGov also revealed that almost half (45%) of them believe competitveness can destroy team spirit.

Only one-fifth saw it as a positive influence.

When questioned about what causes competition at work, more than one-third pointed the finger at bosses, believing that managers play colleagues off against one another.

Male employees were more likely to see competition in the workplace as positive, and also more likely to believe they need to be competitive to advance their careers.

Simon Jones, acting chief executive at Investors in People, said: “Employee ambition can have a positive impact on the workplace, driving both personal development as well as business performance.

“But, there is a balance to be struck between personal progress that supports the business, and excessive competition that can undermine it. Left unchecked, competition among employees can be divisive, damaging team spirit and breeding a culture of mistrust.”

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