The Ins and Outs of Modern Office Politics
Article brought to you by: Phillip Donaldson
Office or workplace politics is unfortunate, but is also a fact of life. As employees of any business, it's important to understand the rules of typical office politics, and why coworkers might behave the way they do. For those of you who are currently in the workforce, you should always be aware of any office related politics taking place so that you can stay on top of how things are run within your place of employment. Here are some helpful tips to assist you in dealing with the daily workplace politics that we all know so well.
Dealing with Difficult Co-workers
You may get along with most of your coworkers, most of the time. But there always seems to be at least one person in the office who might be a bit difficult to deal with. It's important to always be polite to this person, even if you dislike their behavior. Try not to show favoritism towards others and shun this person, or there might be backlash later. For people who seem hard to work with, it’s a good idea to simply deal with them only on an as-needed basis. This way, you avoid excess contact with them, allowing yourself to be less frustrated.
Assertiveness vs. Bossiness
If you've been promoted and are now assigned a supervisory role, your coworkers might begin to view you differently. This can make for some mean and often spiteful office politics. There is a difference between using your "power" to get others to do their jobs, and simply being bossy. Remember that polite, kind words tend to get more accomplished than dictating to others what needs to be done. Take a step back and remember that everyone should be treated fairly, and that things can get accomplished without seeming bossy or demanding.
All businesses should have their own individual code of ethics, so that certain standards are upheld. It is important that everyone at work be diligent of these ethics, and that you never tolerate people who break certain ethics rules. Stealing from the company, taking bribes from customers, or ignoring sexual harassment rules are all some examples of breaking common business ethics rules. Some people believe that harming the environment or taking too much profit are also ethics violations. Know when to step back and stay inside the line, so you avoid getting yourself or others into any trouble.
Tips for Surviving "The Game"
Often, people feel as if their workplace is surrounded with people who are in touch with or close to the boss or CEO, and those who are not. Favoritism can often be shown, causing feelings of resentment or fear that someone might lose their job. Whether you're new and trying to work your way up the corporate ladder, or you're a seasoned veteran, it is important to know how to play the game of office politics properly. Always remember to maintain a cool demeanor even if you feel frustrated. Try to talk to your boss in private if you're having any issues but let them know you do not want to get anyone into trouble. Try to do your job to the best of your abilities and follow company rules, and you should be able to survive "the game" just fine.
Coping with Workplace Stress
Stress at the workplace is a common reason for divorce, heart attacks, and other problems, so it's essential that you learn to cope with it. No job is stress-free, but you should reevaluate your current situation if you think the workplace is too much for your handle. If you find yourself feeling stressed at work, take a deep breath and try to remain calm. Use breathing or concentration exercise to help you relax. If you need to, ask for a day off every once in a while so you can have time to yourself. Do not let stress from work overtake your life; instead, take control over it.