You share a work area with someone who is extremely messy.
Try as you might, you’re probably not going to change this person’s habits. So think through what your desired outcome is. Are there ways to separate the shared space better? Maybe you can place a vertical ling system between your desk area and theirs so the mess is not as much in view. A gentle nudge might be just what they need to tidy up.
You had a fight with a coworker, and now it’s awkward.
The worst thing you can do, says career expert Jill Jacinto, is avoid your coworker. “You want to be mending the relationship, rebuilding it. Say simply, ‘What do you think is the best way to put this behind us?’ and let them help guide the conversation.”
A coworker often stops by your desk to chat. You don’t want to be rude, but you need to work.
Try standing up when they walk over so they don’t sit down and get comfortable, suggests John Daly, PhD, a leadership consultant and professor of communication at University of Texas at Austin. Also, wearing headphones sends a clear visual cue that you don’t want to be interrupted.
A coworker constantly complains about their job. But you like your job! How can you avoid getting sucked into the negativity?
Support your coworker without contributing more than a sympathetic ear to the conversation. Avoid fanning the flames or roasting in a re of feelings you don’t share.
One of your coworkers always interrupts you and co-opts your ideas in meetings.
Raise a hand to signal “I’m not done yet,” or avoid eye contact with a likely interrupter and keep speaking, says Daly. You could also connect with a buddy before the meeting and ask them to stick up for you.
If you feel the need to follow up after the meeting, try saying, “I’m not sure you’re aware, but sometimes you get so excited about ideas that I feel interrupted. Could you keep an eye on that?”