July 11, 2012
The Office Gossip Girl
“She’s just mean.” “He’s a snob.” “She kisses up so much.”
No, these aren’t conversations at a local high school. Many of us overhear them every day at work – office gossip.
If you dread heading to the office more because of who sits next to you than the actual job, you are not alone.
This survey says 44 percent of people don’t like their co-workers.
The main workplace complaints: mean colleagues, the boss having a favorite and constant gossip. To cope, many keep their head down and focus on work. However, surprisingly, this may not be the right long-term solution.
Linda A. Hill, a professor at Harvard Business School, agrees. “Hunkering down will only make you less influential and less effective.” She says engaging others is the best way to squelch office politics.
“Create ongoing relationships for mutual advantage,” Hill suggests.
How? Trade favors – help someone out then cash in your chips later.
Other experts advise being friendly but cautious when it comes to clingy coworkers, disengaging in passive-aggressive behavior and focusing on pleasing the people who matter most (superiors and clients).
The Harvard Business Review suggests women can make office politics work for them by charting a map of informal teams and influential alliances and not being afraid to lobby for career support.
Bonus PINK Link: From office politics to government politics, find out how women stack up.
Comment and tell us how you deal with office politics.
By Gena Latrell
“Charm is the ability to make someone else think that
both of you are pretty wonderful.”
*Supporting images from FreeDigitalPhotos.net, David Castillo Dominici, Stuart Miles, and iconmac