Every office environment turns political at some point or the other. It may be due to the imminent downsizing as the firm cannot support a lot of employees because it is not making any money or it could turn political when a position opens up for which one from the current employee's lot has to be selected.
When one does not know how to deal with office politics, one can make a common situation bizarre just by overreacting to it as it may make you feel that people are against you when they are just thinking about themselves, a trait that you too embody.
Competition can stress you out as it requires you to be competitive all the time and the stress associated with it only goes out if you quit or if you get promoted. The reward or punishment often brings a satisfaction but you can never stay away from competition for long, as life itself is based on this game. If you are involved in office politics, you feel a positive energy at the workplace as you know that your job is secure till the time you have good relations with your seniors and if you are not, you may feel insecure from time to time that will make you uneasy and compromise your focus.
#1. Acknowledge The Facts
In every office you have worked in, throughout your career, you would have noticed that your colleagues have friendly relationships with some of their co-workers and not all of them. They have both, friends and enemies and they also have frenemies. It is important to have both friends and enemies as friends will help you hold true to your character and your enemies will help you examine your shortcomings which will easily get past your friends. It is very important for you to learn how things work in your organization so that you only worry about the real elements and work to make your peace with the co-workers instead of driving your head up the wall with irrational imagination. In order to acknowledge the facts and see how things are in your organization, you just have to observe how information in your workplace flows. See, who does the CEO call when he has to deliver a message to the entire team and with whom does the HR discuss things or take suggestions from, before introducing a new policy or doing something. Once you understand the pattern it will be instrumental in you laying the groundwork for your own play in the political game.
(Also, Read: How To Deal With Frenemies At Workplace?)
#2. Believe That There Is Always Room For New Alliances
No matter how much a person has lived or how many successful journeys he or she has undertaken, a person will always be ready to participate in a new opportunity when they have something to gain from it. All you need to do is figure out what is it that they want to gain and help them get it. Be friendly with most of the colleagues in the office. However, one should also remember not to try to be friendly with each of them as it will leave an impression that you are a flatterer and a fake person. Talk to people, try to know them, keep the possibilities of new alliances open but never make it to the level where people start hating you because you always try to be friendly with everyone so that you can win at office politics. Don’t defame your peers. Just make your plan and follow it.
#3. Be Warm And Friendly
Say 'hello' and 'goodbye' to peers with whom you don’t talk much. It is true about us that we like some people more than others and there is nothing wrong with that as everybody cannot find common ground with everyone. Sometimes, a colleague may get infatuated with you and when you, don’t respond in the same rhythm it may place malice in their heart, or it could be that they made an error at work which you pointed out and it made them feel that you were humiliating them. People can do and feel all kinds of things as it is a difficult practice not to take things personally. When you are warm and friendly towards people even after they have taken what you did the wrong way it tells them that you are not as unfriendly and insolent as they thought you are and appeases their anger. This will stop them from scheming on a daily basis on how to take revenge or hurt you.
#4. Beware Of The Snobbish Attitude
When you start working in an organization, you will notice that the seniors usually disregard the rules and the system because they have served for long enough to acquire disdain for it and no longer obey them 100 percent. This is not what they will limit themselves to as they can come off as a little overbearing and would boss you around before they let you settle and create your comfort zone. It could be that the same happened to them when they first came in, and they have mistaken it as a tradition. It’s okay if it doesn’t impinge on how you go about your business or hampers your productivity because it can only do so when you treat yourself the way they are treating you. You must never forget that you are always free to treat yourself the way you want and have only to obey the rules which are set in stone and written on paper and even raise your voice if they are too distressing. Therefore, it is always better to avoid a certain distance from such seniors so that they won't boss around and defame you.
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(Image Courtesy: 1. Cramer Consulting, 2. Englelvoeelkers, 3. Business Insider: YouTube(Featured Image Courtesy)