You can choose your job but not the people you work with and unfortunately, it’s very difficult, if not impossible to determine everyone you will work alongside and what their personality is. Many of us spend approximately 40 hours a week sitting next to or reporting into someone we would never choose to be friends with and although this is unavoidable, there are ways you can deal with this.
There is someone in every office who loves to talk and you may find yourself dreading asking even the simplest of questions because you know it will result in a lengthy and irrelevant discussion. Although it’s nice to take a five minute break every so often, this coworker often ends up being a huge distraction to everyone.
One of the best ways to get around this is to make sure that you always have something important you need to get on with. If necessary, set up a system with colleagues where if you get cornered, one of them will call you to help them with something.
These bosses like to be in control at all times and will therefore interfere with pretty much every task they set their staff. This style of management can be incredibly demotivating and it can make time management very difficult as well.
If you have a boss like this, try to flood them with information and over-report on everything. Not only will you be prepared for the things they ask for but if they see you are being pro-active then it will also help them to worry less. If you are really struggling to cope with your manager then try to identify the things you can and cannot cope with and only confront them about the things you really need them to change.
The over-committed colleague
Although there is absolutely nothing wrong with being keen at work, colleagues who are always going the extra mile can be a pain to work with. Chances are that they will make you feel bad and as a result you will end up picking up extra work yourself.
If you have a co-worker like this simply remind your boss that people should be measured on output and results rather than input and hours worked.
The cool person
Almost every office has the fun person who manages to break all the rules and get away with it. They may talk back to senior managers or turn up late every morning yet their career doesn’t seem to suffer because of it.
It’s perfectly fine to be friends with the cool kid in the office but do try to keep some distance during office hours and definitely don’t try to get away with what they do because chances are that you won’t.
The office gossip
The office gossip can be a lot of fun to be around but there are some important things to consider. Firstly, if you’re with them all the time then people may start associating you as being a gossip too. Secondly, if this person is bad-mouthing everyone else in the office then chances are that they’re doing it about you as well.
Again, it’s perfectly fine to be on good terms with this person – just not too good. You can use them if you want ‘secrets’ broadcast and feed them interesting but unimportant titbits but never tell them anything that you actually want to remain a secret.