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Gossip and Trash-Talking Colleagues: 7 Golden Rules to Follow If You Want a Drama-Free Office

Gossip and Trash-Talking Colleagues: 7 Golden Rules to Follow If You Want a Drama-Free Office

You’d think that all the gossiping and trash-talking stops once you hit a certain age, but like with the rest of the expectations that we have early in life, this one never really seems to match reality. People tend to gossip and cause drama for many different reasons – low self-esteem, affinities for popularity or nothing but pure boredom – but the fact is they do it. Just because drama is in the human nature, that doesn’t mean that you should allow it in your office; there are certain precautions that should be taken.

1. Remember High School is Over

"The Friendship Contraction" -- Sheldon's selfish demands force Leonard to reconsider their friendship.  Meanwhile, Wolowitz tries to pick his astronaut nickname, on THE BIG BANG THEORY, Thursday, Feb. 2 (8:00-8:31 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network.  Pictured (clockwise from left):  Johnny Galecki, Kunal Nayyar, Simon Helberg, Jim Parsons. Photo: Michael Yarish/Warner Bros. �©2012 Warner Bros. Television. All Rights Reserved.

    People find it difficult to deal with this fact, especially if they were popular in high school. This is a system they know and love, and why shouldn’t they try to continue establishing it if they don’t encounter any resistance? This hierarchy isn’t at all difficult to spot – classical mean girls, the cool kids, neglected or bullied nerds, predominant athletes – everyone’s familiar with these clichés. Now, you need to play your role right by not indulging or accepting these groups. To achieve this you need to always make them work in different teams; this way they will be forced to get to know each other and work together.

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    2. Establish Anger Management Methods

    Causes of frustration and anxiety are things everyone should leave outside the office. In an ideal world, you’d have enough time to devote yourself to every one of your employees and help them deal with their issues. Bullying and mistreating people in your office can often be a simple outlet for built-up stress, which is why you need to have proper ways to deal with it. First of all, everyone needs to be familiar with basic etiquette – if one decides not to follow the common rules, you need to have previously established methods of dealing with them, and everyone must suffer the same consequences for these kinds of actions.

    3. Work on Your Team Building Activities

    04 The Office

      If you want a team, you need to build one. Members of a strong team need to eat together, work together and play together. Depending on the area of your expertise, all of you probably have more than one thing in common – you just need to find it. Once you establish which activities you can enjoy together, the only thing left is to pick a date. You should also know that hard-working employees need to feel appreciated, so a nurturing gift basket with a relaxing effect is something you should treat them with every now and then.

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      4. Don’t Run from Confrontations

      Built-up tension simply can’t be good for business. It’s completely normal for people to have conflicts when they interact, but it’s not healthy for those conflicts to be left unresolved. As a team leader or a simple observer you should encourage both conflicted parties to sit down and talk things out, which is the adult, mature and a responsible way to deal with this kind of situation.

      5. Invest into a Stress Free Room

      03 Med Man

        Every office needs to provide a safe, calm environment for all employees. Considering the fact that not all workplaces can be silent and crowd free – depending on the job description, naturally – the obvious solution is to introduce a stress-free space to your business. Ideally, this space should be a source of fresh air, lots of plants and calming colors, a sort of Zen garden if you will, but you should work with what you have. For starters, a corner with fresh flowers and a water machine will do!

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        6. If You Look for Drama, You Will Find It

        All jobs become a bit dull at some point, which is why people tend to look for practically anything to break that monotony. No matter if they do it subconsciously or not, you should draw their attention to this phenomenon, so that everyone can do their best to avoid it. However, a team leader needs to know when to intervene and when to stay out – treating them like children will only justify them behaving like children. Besides, a bit of healthy competition and a certain amount of appropriate humor should be welcomed.

        7. Encourage Focusing on the Positive

        01 Mitch & Cam

          Instead of wasting time on trash-talking and gossiping, you need to all transfer your focus onto growth and development. All that time and energy invested into finding out who said what to whom could be put to better use. You should do your best to preoccupy them with various courses, seminars, and other means of improvement. By working on their individual development, you’ll definitely speedup the progress you’re making as a team.

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          This might be a lot to take in at once but if you introduce each of these methods slowly, one by one, I’m sure you’ll be able to notice changes sooner than you think. If one of them seems inefficient, you should move on to the next one – these are the people you work with everyday, and they usually don’t appreciate being forced into anything. Take things slow, and you’ll be able to get rid of that unnecessary drama in your office.

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          Last Updated on October 13, 2020

          How to Get Promoted When You Feel Stuck in Your Current Position

          How to Get Promoted When You Feel Stuck in Your Current Position

          Have you been stuck in the same position for too long and don’t really know how to get promoted and advance your career?

          Feeling stuck could be caused by a variety of things:

          • Taking a job for the money
          • Staying with an employer that no longer aligns with your values
          • Realizing that you landed yourself in the wrong career
          • Not feeling valued or feeling underutilized
          • Taking a position without a full understanding of the role

          There are many other reasons why you may be feeling this way, but let’s focus instead on learning what to do now in order to get unstuck and get promoted

          One of the best ways to get promoted is by showing how you add value to your organization. Did you make money, save money, improve a process, or do some other amazing thing? How else might you demonstrate added value?

          Let’s dive right in to how to get promoted when you feel stuck in your current position.

          1. Be a Mentor

          When I supervised students, I used to warm them — tongue in cheek, of course — about getting really good at their job.

          “Be careful not to get too good at this, or you’ll never get to do anything else.”

          This was my way of pestering them to take on additional challenges or think outside the box, but there is definitely some truth in doing something so well that your manager doesn’t trust anyone else to do it.

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          This can get you stuck.

          Jo Miller of Be Leaderly shares this insight on when your boss thinks you’re too valuable in your current job:

          “Think back to a time when you really enjoyed your current role…You became known for doing your job so well that you built up some strong ‘personal brand’ equity, and people know you as the go-to-person for this particular job. That’s what we call ‘a good problem to have’: you did a really good job of building a positive perception about your suitability for the role, but you may have done ‘too’ good of a job!”[1]

          With this in mind, how do you prove to your employer that you can add value by being promoted?

          From Miller’s insight, she talks about building your personal brand and becoming known for doing a particular job well. So how can you link that work with a position or project that will earn you a promotion?

          Consider leveraging your strengths and skills.

          Let’s say that the project you do so well is hiring and training new entry-level employees. You have to post the job listing, read and review resumes, schedule interviews, make hiring decisions, and create the training schedules. These tasks require skills such as employee relations, onboarding, human resources software, performance management, teamwork, collaboration, customer service, and project management. That’s a serious amount of skills!

          Are there any team members who can perform these skills? Try delegating and training some of your staff or colleagues to learn your job. There are a number of reasons why this is a good idea:

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          1. Cross-training helps in any situation in the event that there’s an extended illness and the main performer of a certain task is out for a while.
          2. As a mentor to a supervisee or colleague, you empower them to increase their job skills.
          3. You are already beginning to demonstrate that added value to your employer by encouraging your team or peers to learn your job and creating team players.

          Now that you’ve trained others to do that work for which you have been so valued, you can see about re-requesting that promotion. Explain how you have saved the company money, encouraged employees to increase their skills, or reinvented that project of yours.

          2. Work on Your Mindset

          Another reason you may feel stuck in a position is explained through this quote:

          “If you feel stuck at a job you used to love, it’s normally you—not the job—who needs to change. The position you got hired for is probably the exact same one you have now. But if you start to dread the work routine, you’re going to focus on the negatives.”[2]

          In this situation, you should pursue a conversation with your supervisor and share your thoughts and feelings to help you learn how to get promoted. You can probably get some advice on how to rediscover the aspects of that job you enjoyed, and negotiate either some additional duties or a chance to move up.

          Don’t express frustration. Express a desire for more.

          Present your case and show your boss or supervisor that you want to be challenged, and you want to move up. You want more responsibility in order to continue moving the company forward. Focus on how you can do that with the skills you have and the positive mindset you’ve cultivated.

          3. Improve Your Soft Skills

          When was the last time you put focus and effort into upping your game with those soft skills? I’m talking about those seemingly intangible things that make you the experienced professional in your specific job skills[3].

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          Use soft skills when learning how to get promoted.

            According to research, improving soft skills can boost productivity and retention 12 percent and deliver a 250 percent return on investment based on higher productivity and retention[4]. Those are only some of the benefits for both you and your employer when you want to learn how to get promoted.

            You can hone these skills and increase your chances of promotion into a leadership role by taking courses or seminars.

            Furthermore, you don’t necessarily need to request funding from your supervisor. There are dozens of online courses being presented by entrepreneurs and authors about these very subjects. Udemy and Creative Live both feature online courses at very reasonable prices. And some come with completion certificates for your portfolio!

            Another way to improve your soft skills is by connecting with an employee at your organization who has a position similar to the one you want.

            Express your desire to move up in the organization, and ask to shadow that person or see if you can sit in on some of their meetings. Offer to take that individual out for coffee and ask what their secret is! Take copious notes, and then immerse yourself in the learning.

            The key here is not to copy your new mentor. Rather, you want to observe, learn, and then adapt according to your strengths.

            4. Develop Your Strategy

            Do you even know specifically why you want to learn how to get promoted? Do you see a future at this company? Do you have a one-year, five-year, or ten-year plan for your career path? How often do you consider your “why” and insure that it aligns with your “what”?

            Sit down and make an old-fashioned pro and con list.

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            Write down every positive aspect of your current job and then every negative one. Which list is longer? Are there any themes present?

            Look at your lists and choose the most exciting pros and the most frustrating cons. Do those two pros make the cons worth it? If you can’t answer that question with a “yes,” then getting promoted at your current organization may not be what you really want[5].

            The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why. —Mark Twain

            Here are some questions to ask yourself:

            • Why do you do what you do?
            • What thrills you about your current job role or career?
            • What does a great day look like?
            • What does success look and feel like beyond the paycheck?
            • How do you want to feel about your impact on the world when you retire?

            Define success to get promoted

              These questions would be great to reflect on in a journal or with your supervisor in your next one-on-one meeting. Or, bring it up with one of your work friends over coffee.

              Final Thoughts

              After considering all of these points and doing your best to learn how to get promoted, what you might find is that being stuck is your choice. Then, you can set yourself on the path of moving up where you are, or moving on to something different.

              Because sometimes the real promotion is finding your life’s purpose.

              More Tips on How to Get Promoted

              Featured photo credit: Razvan Chisu via unsplash.com

              Reference

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