Ever notice how thick the air gets when dealing with a colleague that is highly competitive? Everywhere you turn, there’s a wall: a wall of tension, rivalry, mistrust... And the list goes on and on.
Thankfully, there are strategies you can use to make your work experience more enjoyable and productive while dealing with the so-called wannabe kings and queens of your world in any organization.
1. Fight off bragging
When you hear how someone is talking REALLY LOUD about all they’ve accomplished and now, and you feel compelled to join in.
Don’t you do it ….
Never mind what they are doing. Does it contribute to your world? No... Then let’s keep things moving. Choose your battles. Just because someone shouts from the roof top is not a call for you to do so as well.
2. Stay In Your Lane
People that brag and compete can consume you and your thoughts in a voracious way. Try to focus fully on your own role within the company. Be a team player. Share ideas, help out co-workers when they’re in a jam, and don’t be the first to take credit when something goes right. When others see you as an essential part of the office, your stock within that company will rise, regardless of others’ behavior.
3. Take Stock of Your Surroundings
The best places I’ve worked always had one or two individuals to be weary of. Take a step back, look around, analyze, and be critical in your thinking. If the equation bends towards an unusually competitive atmosphere, it could lead a toxic experience for you. If so, you may want to consider finding work elsewhere. There isn’t just your career to consider here, but your mental health as well.
4. Practice Zero Tolerance
If your co-worker’s behavior is impacting how you perform, it’s time to throw down the gauntlet. No need to be loud and aggressive. With the same confidence that you apply in your work, face them with a “shakedown” and explain how their actions are affecting you. In some cases, the individual may have no idea that their competitive nature has become out of control. Cluing them in can help them to tone down these tendencies, making the company a much more pleasant place to work.