No matter how progressive or hipster is the place where you work, you will eventually stumble upon co-workers who are a perfect synonym to the word; negative! These may be somewhere between just discouraging you, to snitching about anything and everything, credit stealers, or just arrogant double-faced individuals, who are extra sweet to the boss, coaxing you out of equal opportunities. Take your pick!
No matter what the situation is, your personal conduct during work should call for a certain level of professionalism. Even if you work as a freelancer or from home, every employer expects you to cooperate with your colleagues and strive for excellence. So, how does one deal with those that go out of their way to make your working life hell?
Always remember, you need not stoop to their level while dealing with negative folks. Not only would you be wasting your time, energy and mood, but also risking your professional career being jeopardized, which is exactly what they want.
Here’s how you’d want to deal with them:
Mark your turf
Gandhi said, nobody can hurt you, unless you allow them to. Always mark definite boundaries; professionally and personally, to prevent others from intruding your personal space. Allowing others to crack a casual joke or a sarcastic taunt today would probably accelerate into something unwanted tomorrow. If you’re uncomfortable with something, let others know well-in-advance, while it can be nipped be in the butt.
Always keep your deadlines and work as expected
If tomorrow someone goes out of their way to make your professional life bad, just remember, that the organization is going to research your professional profile and see what kind of an employee you are in the first place. Make sure all your deadlines are met and all your work is done exactly how it is expected first, regardless of how much trouble those pesky colleagues give you.
Distance yourself from the negativity
Why ruin your mental peace and professional career, when you can simply walk away and avoid the situation altogether? Try talking to the management if physically moving away in office, to a place, where you do not feel harassed is a possibility. Alternatively, see if maybe you can work under some other senior/boss or department if there’s a problem with the current one(s). Companies would rather adjust you in a different department than completely cut ties with an employee.
Develop a support circle
It would be statistically extremely rare that there’s absolutely nobody out there to watch your back or be supportive of you. Maintain closer relations with those that support you. They might help cover for you in case someone is going out of their way to trouble you. In other cases, they’ll help you feel better and have a better mental setting to work more effectively.
Do not hesitate to complain to the HR
The HR department’s job and duty is to make sure all employees and happy and content, and not being harassed unnecessary. If the situation is not resolving on its own and you want to stand strong to your principles, then quitting is not an option! Talk to the HR!
It could be a polite oral complaint or a written one, whatever is the need of the hour, but do something that would validate and can be used as a proof of communication for any future references. Alternatively, consider dropping an anonymous notice to the HR if you think talking face to face would jeopardize your position.
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