Many job ads demand that applicants must be “team players” for any given position. However, in reality many people secure positions in all kinds of businesses who are simply difficult to get along with. Among the many difficult personality types one is likely to encounter in just about any company is the braggart, the gossiper, the drama queen, the egotist and many others who cause discord in the workplace. The trick is in knowing how to deal with them in a productive manner so as not to affect your work or to cause further conflict. Here are some productive ways to deal with the above personality types in the workplace.
- Take the high road: One simple strategy for avoiding conflict with all of the above office personalities is to simply not engage in behavior or talk that is negative. Be the better person and confine your talk to workplace matters and above all avoid personal attacks on any co-worker.
- Learn to recognize “toxic” co-workers: Make a mental note the first time you see certain co-workers exhibiting the kind of “toxic” behaviors that we are describing. Your best defense is to recognize behaviors that threaten workplace amicability.
- Be prepared to engage them in a construction way: Sometimes completely avoiding a “toxic” co-worker is impossible. This is especially true if they are in the same department or even office area. In this case, confrontation may be unavoidable. Just make sure that you remain calm as you stick up for yourself. If the conflict is with a superior, make sure that you go through the chain of command – cautiously.
- Pick your battles: This closely relates to the above tip. Evaluate your circumstances carefully and fully in order to determine if a particular battle is worth fighting. What are the chances of success? What could the consequences of confrontation be? What are the risks vs. the rewards of having the difficult conversation with a co-worker?
- Act quickly: Before any workplace situation becomes too toxic, take action. Letting things fester could make things worse in the long run for you, the co-workers and for others who work around you.
Every top staffing firm in NYC, makes great efforts to hire team players. As one of the leading staffing agencies in New York, we know that this is a trait that employers prize above others. However, human nature being what it is, workplace environments often contain people who sow discord and who negatively affect morale. The trick is in knowing how to avoid such people and their behaviors when possible and in knowing to productively engage them when it is not possible to ignore them.