Career Managing Sideways


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Last update: Mon, 23 Nov 2020 13:37:30 +0800

As long as we are in career for several decades, we deal with co-workers on daily basis. The purpose of this gist is to help make you better equipped with strategic knowledge to maximize benefits as well as to mitigate misunderstandings in working with common types of co-workers with specific or combination of different personalities.Armed with the right mindset, we can learn and adapt to deal with all co-workers to create awesome work atmosphere.
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The Right Mindset



Realize that you can’t control any co-workers' behaviors

Realize that negative co-workers are not worried and not even aware of how their behaviors affect you and everyone else.

Negative people are a part of every workplace.


Instead of getting caught up in focusing on negativities, focus yourself and do the best you can at your job. It’ll help keep you positive, as well.

Arguing with a negative coworker will not get you anywhere, and unfortunately, they're more likely to hold onto their attitudes than you are.

Businesses need teamwork to function. You can't avoid bad co-workers. Just stay around postive colleagues more who lift you up and give you positive energy instead.


No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.-Eleanor Roosevelt

Start by firmly and swiftly booting the person out of your head. We can't control how people act, but we have 100 percent control over how we react to them.

Saying that your co-worker makes you feel bad about yourself or claiming that your boss makes you mad implies that other people have power over how you feel.


We can’t control other people negative vibrations but we can counter them only by raising our own positive energy levels to high level positive ones. This is how we can counter them.

If a bad apple at work is unkind to you, chances are they’re mean to others, too.

Most of the people you work with are not your friends. You can be friendly but you can't expect them to behave like your close friends.


Some people just have a negative outlook on life, live and thrive on negativities. It has nothing to do with you, so don’t take it personally.

Look for the hidden positive outcome motivating the person to act  in a certain bad way.

Consider ways you may be enabling the passive aggressive dynamic to stay in place as well: backhanded compliments





Types



The Finger Pointer/The Victims - blame on other people and don’t take responsibility for their actions

The Gossip on you - wreck your reputation if you don’t address the issue, yet every office has a gossip queen or king.

The Passive-Aggressive - agree to help you with a project but then come up short or miss a deadline.


The Credit Thief - You’ve done all the hard work and achieved great results—only to have your co-worker steal credit for your work and ideas.

The Back Stabber

The Bad News Bear - can’t wait to tell you that the supplier made a mistake, the executive is ticked off, and someone’s head is going to roll.


The Drama - whose workload is bigger than anyone else’s, who has the worst flu symptoms during cold season, and whose clients are the most annoying. They thrive on chaos and will one-up any story you have.

The Overly-Competitive

The Mr. Better/Know-It-All/Mr.Right - You got to listen to him/her. Only whatever she/he say is right and what other people are telling/working is all wrong or not up to his/her standards.


The Bully - picks on people, blames others, or tattles when it isn’t necessary to do so.

The Lazy - pushes off work and tries to get the rest of the team to carry their weight.

The Narcissist - highly conceited and will always brag about his achievements, accomplishments and his personal life incessantly


The Venus flytrap - who cycles between overvaluing and devaluing you and flips into more negativity ; believes in push-pull relationships; make you feel like he's your friend




Negative Behaviors



- Backstabbing, denigrating, and blaming

- Gossiping, trash talking and spreading rumors


- Taking advantage of the misfortune of others

- Agreeing in meetings, but not following through afterward

- Hoarding information


- Not acting like a good team player

- Outwardly offending others

- Instinct discomfort in other coworkers


- Purposely undermining others

- Complaining, whining and offering no solutions

- Oversharing


- Fostering negativity

- Displaying self-serving behavior

Feel superior by putting others down.





Negative: Nature



Negative by nature

Gossip at every chance they get

Might even make others feel guilty for things they haven’t done


Never let any positivity or enthusiasm float around.

Tend to have a competitive side

Tend to suck the life right out of you. Force you to remain engrossed with their negativity.


Tend to share less

Tend to work less

Generally looking for people to feed off their gossip, anger and disappointment, but they'll stop once they know they won't get anywhere.


Always says something negative

Constantly creates a hostile work environment

Unaware of how their negative attitude is impacting their relationships.


Staying around him makes you feel demoralized

Personal and targeted - For whatever reason a co-worker might not like you, he'll constantly complain and harass you into frustration.

Tend to complain on petty problems


Constant complainers aren't usually looking for solutions. Often they do it because they want to feel heard or they want their view to dominate - they want everyone to agree with them that the world is F’ed up.

Counteract positivity

Make it hard to have a fruitful conversation with them and others


Challenge collaboration and your team’s ability to find the middle ground

Shame others in public




Negative: Strategies



Remove your emotion from the interaction.


Focus on how you can react to their behavior in a way that it doesn’t drag you down

Focus on how you can react to their behavior in a way that it doesn't leave you obsessing over the situation.

Resist getting involved in any office politics


Try Not To Overanalyze. By overanalyzing the behavior of negative people, you’re essentially wasting your valuable time.

Set boundaries with the negative coworker at hand. Be frank what you can't stand. Physically stay away from them such as joining lunch.

Don't allow yourself to get draw into their negative conversations, and don’t show sympathy for the negativity.


Don’t engage in the competitiveness — it’s not worth it.

Keeping a paper trail of the specific items you worked on along the way in case this coworker tried to hijack your ideas and efforts as their own.

Avoid Bonding at all cost. It might be tempting in a scenario when the person brings up something that is particularly relevant to you where you want to chime in


Liimit the amount of time you spend with them.

Be Assertive - nothing stops the spread of their attitude as much as assertion does.

Speak up with when you're dealt with badly.


Set boundaries strictly.

Don't feel bad when you say No.

Don't be easily offended.


Avoid creating a social life that revolves around this person.

Redirect the conversation

Tell the negative coworker, you prefer to think about your job positively. Avoid providing a sympathetic audience for the negativity.


Stay consistent in your assertive communication and work to establish clear standards and expectations that hold them accountable.




Gossip: Strategies



Confront the instigator directly. Approach the person in private and politely, while firmly expressing your displeasure. One tactic: Start the conversation lightly. For instance, “I heard the strangest thing…”

Avoid participating in gossip by making your stance clear: “I’m sorry, it sounds like you’re dealing with a tough situation, but I’m just not comfortable talking about a co-worker.”





Credit Thief: Strategies



Take ownership of your ideas by copying your managers on important emails, like project updates.




Passive-aggressive: Strategies



Broach the subject with the person directly: “I got the impression you understood the job’s requirements when we spoke before the meeting but then the job was left unfinished. I’d like to know what wasn’t clear so I can avoid this in the future.”




Finger Pointer: Strategies



Address with the person one on one. Explain the facts of the situation in a clear and non-threatening way.


Talk through the discrepancies and then develop a solution together.




Bad News Bear: Strategies



To exit the conversation gracefully (and quickly), try using quick getaway phrases, like “I have a phone call I need to jump on,” or “I need to prep for the meeting this afternoon.




Mr. Better/Know-It-All/Mr.Right : Strategies



Be empathetic. ...


Pick your battles. ...

Lead by example. ...

Be armed with your own facts. ...


Keep your sense of humor. ...

Ask probing questions. ...

Take the person aside and offer constructive feedback on their behavior.


Avoid involving your boss unless the know-it-all is truly threatening your success.




Last Resort On Extreme Case



With your co-workers, set a private meeting with your boss and explain how this person's negativity is affecting your ability to do your work. This is something your boss should handle.

File an anonymous complaint to HR about the negative behavior.