How to handle tricky situations at workplace Here are the various embroglios you may find yourself in and how to deal with them without hurting your career. DEVASHISH CHAKRAVARTY

 It isn’t possible to have a happy and positive environment at work all the time. You are bound to run into altercations and tricky situations that can impact your work or even derail your career. Though the causes may not always be under your control, you can choose your reaction and swing the outcome in your favour. Here are a few such situations and the ways you can deal with them. 
You have not been promoted, but love your work 
Was it a company-wide promotion freeze or performance issues? Should you leave or stay for an increment and promotion next year? If you have a back-up offer in a similar, exciting role with a potential raise, it is a good time to explore it. If you don’t, speak to your manager to understand performance or relationship challenges that held you back, and create a time-bound action plan to get to your goal quickly. Don’t compare yourself with others or lose sight of what matters more to you—job satisfaction and security, or career progression. The opposite of this situation is if you hate your work, but have got a raise. Leverage this to find a similar position in a profile you enjoy or create challenges in your present role. 
You get a promotion and your friends now report to you 
Your professional commitments will often conflict with personal equations when you have to pull up a friend for missing a deadline or ask him to work over the weekend to complete a project. You and your friends will find it challenging to separate the professional from the personal on a daily basis. The overlapping actions and reactions will either hamper work outcomes or damage the relationship. Take the professional approach to protect your career. Have an honest chat with your ex-colleagues and discuss mutual expectations and concerns. Be clear that the workplace equation cannot remain the same and reach a rational agreement. Deliver on your promises and expect the same in return. Also explore options in your firm that will let you work with a different set of team members. 
You have blundered at work 
You have caused a major goof-up, which can affect you, your team or the firm. Your only focus should be maintaining your credibility as a professional. So, first take steps to communicate the issue to all stakeholders before they hear it from another source. Choose a face-to-face meeting over written communication. Take complete ownership of the issue, explain what happened, discuss the solution and deadline you have created to resolve the issue, and measures you will take to prevent a recurrence. Be contrite, apologise, recommit to resolving all concerns and communi cate it by the planned deadline. Finally, take action and fulfil your commitment. 
You have had a public spat with your boss 
Did your boss scream at you? Shouting back or standing your ground is usually a bad idea. Stay calm and exit the situation to minimise further damage. When tempers have cooled, return and share your concerns about the tone, words or presence of others. Be respectful, discuss the event and not your boss’s personality, and focus on what would work better in the future. If this is a recurring situation, consider escalating it or speaking to the HR. Did you scream at your boss in public? When you have got a rational grip on yourself, go back to apologise sincerely and commit to rebuilding the relationship. Respect his choice to take action against you. If your firm hauls you up, explain the circumstances leading to the breakdown and maintain your sincerity in apologising and working towards undoing the damage. If the situation is serious and you are at fault, start exploring options outside the firm. 
You’ve broken up with a colleague 
The first step is to not speak about it or badmouth your ex to your boss and co-workers. 
    Ignore all gossip and conversation on the 
    matter and people will soon lose interest. If your boss takes up the issue and expresses concern about your ability to work together, make work your prime focus. Be at your polite and professional best while dealing with the person you broke up with. If 
    interacting civilly becomes difficult, seek out projects or teams that will help you avoid confron tations. Leaving the job should be your last resort and only if you perceive that your career will be compromised by continuing. Finally, remember that despite the convenience and temptation, an office romance is usually a bad idea and hinders your professional growth. 
Others got the credit for your work 
If it is your co-worker, discuss it with him. For minor issues and genuine intent, seek a solution for the future and drop the matter. For major issues or where the co-worker is malicious, esca late the matter in a professional tone and with adequate evidence. If your boss gets credit for your work, decide if it is an issue with you. Typically, the leader gets credit for the team’s output with the understanding that the contributors will be acknowledged. If this does not happen, meet him personally and express your surprise at being left out. Reiterate your support for his goals while sharing his expectations. If the issue is not resolved, crosscheck your evidence and speak to your mentor or HR to discuss options. In future, document your contributions and ideas on e-mail or share them in public to help get credit for your work. 
You are the subject of a vicious rumour 
The best response to negative gossip is to ignore it and be silent instead of reacting defensively. All gossip eventually dies down. However, this is a bad idea if the rumour is mali cious and can harm your career. If you can identify the source, seek a direct, but non-threaten ing, conversation and seek an explanation. Be open to dealing with misunderstandings or real or perceived grievances. If the person apologises or with draws his statement, suggest a solution that will curb the rumour. If the person refuses to engage, escalate the matter. Speak to your boss if you cannot identify the source of rumour. Employers prefer to actively stamp out false gossip that destroys individual or team morale.


Source : The Economics Times

Date : 5/5/2014


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