A peevish boss, crabby colleagues, a cranky partner or petty office politics? What are you suffering from? In a recent survey, 150 executives from the nation's 1,000 largest companies reported that they spend about 19 per cent of their time in the office and about one day a week on office politics. Startling statistics, isn't it? But it's true! So, is there a way to steer clear of such a situation?
Here are few suggestions for the bosses to keep the morale of the staff high in a ‘political' environment:
- Avoid closed door meetings and keep employees informed about company news;
- Always emphasise on the value of ethics and honesty at the workplace;
- Seek and encourage integrity;
- Be judicious and equitable when assigning responsibilities.
Here are some quick tips to help you maintain your cool at work while tackling office politics:
- Use assertive communication when a person treats you in an unacceptable way;
- Try and keep your conversation neutral with such people;
- If the situation worsens and you feel it's time to maintain a distance, then do so and let them know why. However, don't seek to avoid them. What matters is your attitude;
- Don't take any comment personally and try not to be defensive. Arguing back, defending or any kind of justification (at that particular time) can often lead to both parties becoming more entrenched;
- Develop and uphold a good sense of wit. Always stay calm and don't involve yourself in any kind of argument because it will only add fuel to the fire. Diffuse them by ignoring or looking away or may be by starting any other conversation. Unwanted rumours could be upsetting for anybody. It would be unwise to join them in playing such games or stooping low.
Therefore, it's important to deal smartly with office politics. Act normally in any tricky situation and do not try to appease or change such people. Change the way you look at the situation - be calm, firm, honest and humble. Respond with your own optimistic expectation.
Garima Tewari was previously working as chief center co-ordinator at Billabong High International School, Kanpur