Every office has at least one; the person who makes you want to curl up under your desk and cry, or beat them senseless with a stapler.
You can’t choose your co-workers, and sometimes it can be incredibly frustrating to work in an environment with someone like this. When they don’t deliver work when promised, refuse to collaborate, and fail to listen to feedback they make your job difficult and increase the stress level for everyone else.
So what can you do with that co-worker who drives you crazy? Here are a few strategies who dealing with these difficult workmates:
- Keep your cool. Although you might want to send them an email jam-packed with obscenities on a particularly stressful morning, use self restraint. Losing your temper and lashing out at the person will not help the situation at all. You will have more power in this situation if you deal with it in a calm and controlled manner.
- Consider their intentions. Perhaps this person is not being rude or difficult or purpose, they might just not realize the impact their actions are having on others. Or they might be acting up for a completely different reason. Try to get to know them and find out the motivations behind the way that they are acting.
- Consult others about the problem. Have a confidential conversation with another co-worker that you trust. Ask them for support and advice on how you should deal with the situation. They might also have their own experiences with the person that they could share with you.
- Approach the person first. No one likes being “tattled on” to a higher authority, so running to the boss when someone does something that upsets you should not be your first solution. Speak with your colleague in a calm and respectful manner, and tell them exactly what they have done and why you don’t appreciate it. If they are reasonable, or if they didn’t mean any harm, they will apologize and try to resolve the situation.
- However, if you have approached them in this way and they have responded rudely, ignored you, or refused to stop, it’s time to get the boss involved. Provide documented evidence and clear examples to your boss of your co-worker’s inappropriate behavior, and ask them for help.
Although you and your co-worker might not become best friends, hopefully you can find a way to work together in harmony.