Buckley Search Inc.

Partners for Progress

Office Politics - Keeping It Professional


 
kevin@buckleysearch.com                             Tel:   (416) 865-0695 toll-free 1 (866) 996-9984

As recruiters, we often witness the damage that occurs when office politics creates problems for individuals, departments and companies.

Political decisions encourage hypocrisy, secrecy, deal making, rumors, power brokers, self-interests, image-building, self-promotion, and cliques -- not a recipe for effective team work.

For people starting in a new position, unfamiliar with the corporate culture and wanting to blend in with the new team, it can be helpful to remember the following points:

         Stay professional at all times.

         Don't make enemies.

         Don't burn bridges.

         Don't whine and complain.

         Don't intimidate superiors.

         Try to avoid going over your superior's head.

         Don't make others look bad.

         Don't criticize employees or bosses.

         Help others get what they want.

         Establish affiliations of mutual advantage with important people.

         Find common ground with others.

         Don't discuss personal problems.

         Selectively self-disclose.

         Don't assume anything will stay secret.

         Create win/win solutions.

         Keep employer's perspective in mind.

         Cultivate a positive, simple, accurate image.

         Be pleasant. Laugh and smile.

         Be assertive and tough when required, not aggressive.

         Don't oversell.

         Be natural.

         Develop your own style.

Creating a Positive Political Advantage:

         Concentrate on building relationships, not taking sides.

         Ask relevant job-related questions and express appreciation for help given.

         Avoid being drawn into cliques - an "us against them" mentality.

         Learn what is valued in the corporate culture you have joined.

         Remember that people have different motives and levels of maturity.

         Avoid participation in gossip or the spreading of rumours.

         Remember that it takes time to adjust to a new environment.

         Remember that success can create opposition but modesty wins friends.

         Focus your energy on your work and let the results speak for you.

 

So what do you do if there is blatant favoritism, unfair promotion policies or someone has it in for you and there is no likelihood of a positive change in conditions? That is when you owe it to yourself, your health and personal integrity to realize that it is time to move on to a more positive future.
Bear in mind that leaving should be your last resort. If you have helped to create a negative atmosphere by taking an aggressive attitude, challenging
the powers that be or otherwise criticized people well entrenched with the existing power structures, then you may have contributed to the problem.
 

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