Difficult co-workers? Here’s how you handle them

It is a known fact that colleagues who are difficult to work with can make your work-life miserable.  Whether they are lazy, pushy, or negative all the time, it can frequently put you in a bad mood and also affect the performance of the whole team.  So, how do you deal with difficult co-workers so that your professional growth isn’t compromised?  Read on to find out.

1. Talk to them

If your co-worker is being annoying, talk to them about it.  Many a time, issues between colleagues can be sorted out merely by talking about it.  Politely talk to your colleague about it.

2. Keep your issues private

When you do talk to them, make sure you do it in private.  You should remember not to call out any of your colleagues in front of others.  It could ruin your reputation as well as their.

3. Approach them with kindness

Find out if there is a legitimate reason why they are being difficult.  Colleagues may seem to be slacking, but they would be struggling with something personal within.  Approaching them with kindness will help you get to the bottom of it.  If you find out what the problem is, finding the solution won’t be half as difficult.

1 out of 4 people mental health problems every year.  If you happen to feel that you co-worker’s behavior appears inconsistent or emotionally charged than ordinary, there may be some deep-seated psychological issue they are struggling with and you may have been unaware of it.

4. Act with respect

Being respectful to somebody who is obviously being difficult can take a lot of patience.  But if you don’t, it could only make matters worse for you.  They may take your attitude of disrespect as a direct insult and make your work-life more terrible.  Giving respect to the person will allow you to have civil conversations in order to get to the bottom of it.

5. Avoid spending time with them

Avoid spending time with difficult colleagues
Avoid spending time with difficult colleagues

If none of the above work, the best way to deal with a difficult co-worker is to avoid spending time with them.  You may not be completely able to avoid somebody, so, try to minimize crossing paths with them. That way, you will be safe from getting drawn into office politics or gossips and cutting out the negativity can help brighten your day.  Also, if you are made to work closely with such a person, make a stand in the very beginning about your work ethics and restrict topics of conversation to only work matters.  Focus more on the work that has to be done and less worrying about the person you have to work with.

6. Take action if you’re bullied at work

If your colleague is being a bully, let them know it.  Most of the time, they may not realize that they are bullying you.  When you point it out politely, and ask their help to make the office a more comfortable place for you to work at, it may bring about a change in their conduct.

If someone is being highly aggressive with you, whether it is verbal or physical, you can always walk away from them.  Inform them that you are doing so because things have become unprofessional between the two of you.

7. Keep up your positivity

Remember not to let another person bring down your positive attitude.  Keep your personal goals in mind to stay afloat during difficult times.  You will find that not everybody will warm up to you in your office, so make peace with the idea that it is okay not to get along with one of your co-workers.

8. Maintain your cool

Keep your cool
Cool as a cucumber

No matter how much they bug you, make it a point to remain calm and composed.  Any kind of emotional outburst can affect your reputation, so, maintaining your cool is of utmost importance.  In order to grow in your career, you do not have to be best friends with all your colleagues.

9. Avoid trash-talking about that person

If you are the only person who finds it difficult to work closely with a colleague, it would be wise not to complain about that person to other colleagues.  You wouldn’t want to be labelled as the person who is constantly complaining, right?

10. Move on

Don’t dwell too much on what happens at your workplace.  Work is only a part of your life, don’t let it affect your personal life. Understand that such things happen at the workplace, and move on.  Commit yourself to rising above obstacles and focus growing in your career.

Jodi365: Find the right partner, at your own pace.

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Annu John

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