Toxic Workplace: 5 Ways To Get the Upper Hand Against Work Bullies

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The Workplace is where you spend most of the 24 hours of your day, so it’s only reasonable to surround yourself with the best colleagues possible.

But humans are humans and some are irredeemably mean and downright nasty.

Some will lie, deceive and backstab to get ahead at work and in the process create an unbearable work environment.

But all is not lost, there’s a way to deal with such people.

A report on careerbliss.com lists out five surefire ways to deal with overly ‘ambitious’ work colleagues.

Be Kind

Sometimes, a bright smile is all you need. According to  Shawn Achor, founder of Good Think Inc, a positive psychology based consulting firm who was interviewed for the career bliss article,  “We rarely fully understand people at work,

“Work bullies, those who seem most cutthroat, are often really unhappy in their personal lives.”

He also advised that people should “be compassionate and remember that the greatest long-term competitive advantage in the modern economy is a positive and engaged brain,”

So keep a big, fat smile on your face, it’s an excellent tactic.

Always Keep Receipts

Not scandalous stuff, just a record of all your work. Always have evidence of your work, mails, project sheets and so. If there’s a work presentation, always check that you’ve received due credit.

“Never say or write anything in a treacherous work environment that you wouldn’t want publicized,” Dr. Janet Scarborough Civitelli, workplace psychologist at Vocation Village said. “The easiest way for coworkers to sabotage you would be to reveal your secrets.”

Don’t Keep Grudges

Don’t try to inflict revenge on erring co-workers, it doesn’t lead anywhere. “The easiest way to be unhappy at work is to engage in comparison. Be unaffected and change the social script by letting them receive awkward silence every time they try to engage in that fashion,” Anchor said.


Examine If the Co-Worker In Question Is Really a Problem

Sometimes a difficult co-worker is really just a misunderstood person who could actually turn out to be a valuable ally who can teach you a lot.  Perhaps his ‘Ambition’ which you see as wickedness is simply ambition and it might be something you might want to learn from.

“If they are a real threat, avoid. But if not, then while you work with them, work on them,” Achor says. “An enemy today is not necessarily an enemy tomorrow.”


Don’t Sweat It, You Will be Okay Either way

Everyone is different. Our courses, our success trajectories, our motivations, these are all different. Therefore, while it might seem that the office villain is doing well for his/herself, it doesn’t mean you won’t be okay.

But whatever happens, stay true to yourself, stay kind, it will pay in the long run, and it’s not just me saying it, Anchor’s research showed generous people are  40 percent more likely to receive a promotion than their colleagues.

So be kind, don’t be a doormat, and stay true to yourself.

Famutimi Femi is a writer for theheraldng. He is also a lawyer by trade. His hobbies include reading and writing, he also loves Renaissance art.

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