We can’t PREVENT incivility or misbehavior in organizations and startup team; it is a given. On occasion, incivility WILL happen between co-founders, investors, first-hires, managers or team members, especially when we disagree. When our ideas are threatened during discussions and negotiations, we can become defensive, resulting in angry or uncivil behavior. We can, however, create clarity, accountability and transparency by agreeing beforehand how we will tackle this behavior rather than trying to put up with or ignore it.
I could write reams of quotes on the adverse effects that incivility has on teams in organizations. Suffice it for me to say that it is significant, costing over $300 billion in the US alone, with an average working losing around 2 hours a week to conflict and yet tackling incivility is still neglected in many organizations.