How to Deal with Office Politics
February 09, 2024
Alright, we won't lie. You can't escape from the office politics. It's real; sometimes it can be dirty, and you can't avoid it. Eventually, you have to deal with it. But the question is how to deal with the office politics smarty.
This blog will guide you in tackling workplace politics with the right strategies. So, grab your favourite coffee and explore surviving in the workplace chaos.
Office Politics: Observe Your Co-workers First
Before making your first move, get the lay of the land. Every office has its own culture and cast of characters. Figure out the cliques, alliances, and power players. Who are the gossipmongers? Who stabs backs? Who commands respect? Once you figure out the key figures of your workplace, it will be helpful for you to take the next move!
Dealing Office Politics: Fly Under the Radar (Or Don't)
Here's the question: do you put yourself out there or lay low? Well, it depends. If you're new or there's some serious drama, keep your head down and focus on work. Build your reputation slowly so people see you as reliable and drama-free.
To influence people at the workplace, make them your friends. Say yes to happy hours, volunteer for projects, and speak up in meetings. Subtly get the higher-ups to notice you.
Have Allies in Every Corner
In the game of office politics, you win, or you cry at your desk. And no one gets far alone. Look around your workplace chessboard and place your pawns. Align yourself with a workplace mentor who can give you advice and put in a good word with leadership.
Make an ally out of the office gossip; they always know the latest intel. And befriend the staff who can influence the higher-ups. With allies covering all office corners, you can make a shield for yourself.
Save Documents as Proof
Things can get ugly quickly in in-office power struggles. People may throw you under the bus to get ahead or cover up their missteps. Protect yourself by keeping a paper trail. When someone sends you an email regarding some task, and if it seems suspicious, forward it to your personal account.
If a manager gives you unclear or questionable instructions, follow up with an email confirming their request. If conversations get heated, write down what was said right away. Keeping a record can help you out if things go south.
Have Positive Intent and be Normal in Negative Situations
Taking the high road could be beneficial in dealing with workplace politics.
Always try to have positive intentions and talk to your work buddies whenever needed to understand what is going on. This approach will help you to find solutions for various issues and to keep the situation in your control.
Sometimes, office politics have become ugly. So, it would be best to stay neutral in such adverse conditions. By doing so, you will keep yourself away from additional conflicts.
At the end of the day, you should also watch your own back. Don't compromise yourself or get dragged into drama as you play the game. Never engage in unethical behaviour or backstab your co-workers, even if it seems politically advantageous.
Office politics often rewards the slimiest players but builds your reputation on hard work and integrity. Learn how to deal with office politics, spot political games early and use them to protect your sanity when needed. Do what's best for you and your career.
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