How to behave at work
Contributor(s): Meredith Walters, MBA. Meredith Walters is a certified career coach who helps people develop the skills they need to find interesting, fulfilling jobs. She has over 8 years of experience in career and personal coaching, including coaching at the Goizueta School of Business (Emory University) and the U.S. Peace Corps. She is a former board member of the Georgia chapter of the International Coaching Federation. She holds a coaching degree from New Ventures West and a master’s degree in business administration from the University of San Francisco.
Number of views of this article: 14 213.
Attitude at work is just as important as skills and ability. Everyone from office workers to restaurant workers needs an exceptional combination of people skills and passion to feel comfortable in the workplace. Learn how to make a good first impression and gradually transform it into a good reputation.
- If you plan to take public transportation or the new job is in an unfamiliar area, learn the directions beforehand so you can find the place safely and know the exact time it takes to get there.
- Don’t stay late after work. Leaving late can show that you don’t know how to plan your time. Impress your employer: arrive a little early at the right time and leave at the end of the work day.
- It’s important to know your learning style. If you are a better learner, ask your mentor to explain the current task as you go along, rather than having you observe someone else’s work.
- Take a notebook with you to write down important information as you are being introduced. Ask questions and don’t forget to write down the answers.
- Aim not to make the same mistake more than once. If your boss tells you how to do a task, listen and remember so you don’t have to ask again.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Often new employees are embarrassed to ask questions and therefore make mistakes on the job. Don’t hide the fact that you need help. There is no shame in asking for help, especially on the first day. It’s better to listen to an explanation once and then do everything right than to act by trial and error.  X Source of Information
- It’s not uncommon on the first day to just stand around and observe. Get involved at the first opportunity. If an employee is carrying bags of groceries to another location, you don’t have to wait to be told to help them.
- In some places, you need to ask for your next steps. If you are working in the kitchen and have finished preparing a meal, it may seem obvious that dirty dishes should go in the dishwasher, but sometimes a different order is provided. Ask.
- If you work in an office, change the filter in the coffee machine and brew a fresh beverage. Don’t forget to wash cups and spoons and throw away waste. Use the trash can and keep other common areas tidy.
- If you work in a kitchen or restaurant, watch out for obstacles that may get in the way of other workers, and help wash dishes if the need arises. Don’t loiter when everyone else is busy.
- Don’t try to imitate the behavior of other employees. People need time to adjust to a new person in the workplace, so let employees get used to you specifically, not impersonating other people.
- If you work in the kitchen, aim to memorize all the sandwich recipes for the first month so you don’t have to check with a cheat sheet. You can also aim to reduce the time it takes you to make a meal.
- In the first two weeks, focus more on quality work and less on efficiency. Learn how to make sandwiches well first and only then try to speed up the process, because you’ll still have time to get your hands on them.
- It’s also important to know your limits. If you already have ten tasks for the day, don’t take another one that will take hours. Plan your time wisely.
- Don’t forget about foresight. If colleagues ask you to do something, but you are troubled by doubts, it is sometimes useful to consider an alternative plan of action. Remember to be tactful and seek help from your supervisor if the need arises.
- Don’t engage in gossip in the workplace. People often band together in small groups at work, which can be distracting. Think about work, not about observing the rest of the staff.
Be proactive. If the floor of your workplace is strewn with trash, you don’t have to go around the area and tell your supervisor to send a cleaner. Just clean up the trash. You need to do your part to create a comfortable work environment, not to show others that you are somehow better than other employees.
- Come up with a few creative ideas every couple of months and write them down to remember and offer in a timely manner. Discuss ideas in advance with your supervisor before voicing them in a general meeting.
- Make lists of goals and to-do’s so you can see your aspirations. Current things may not seem too important, but how will they help you achieve what you want, move up a notch?
- It’s also important to consider the ultimate goals of the company in which you work.
- If employees tease or criticize other employees, don’t participate. The workplace is quick to find people who like to discuss others, but it’s best not to contribute to a toxic atmosphere. Don’t become a part of the gossiping crowd.
- If you got a position through gossip, lies, and trickery, you will keep your job in the short term, but you will soon develop bad relationships with other employees. It is important to show your real work and skills in order to get the job you deserve and the most suitable position.  X Source of Information
- Focus on the opportunities your job gives you, and remind yourself that successes will make your life easier. If you are working to feed your family or pay tuition, that your efforts directly affect important aspects of your life and loved ones.
Treat people with dignity and respect. Some people are not easy to find common ground with in the workplace, but treating them poorly will have a negative impact on your career opportunities at the company. All employees are selected just as carefully as you are, so being demonstratively contemptuous and disrespectful to some extent shows your view of your employer’s intellectual abilities.
- Be sincere and act with confidence.
- Beware of overly nosy coworkers. Almost every workplace has at least one person who is constantly trying to get information about your salary, schedule, and personal life or opinions about other coworkers. It is best not to answer such questions. Often such people are trying to inflame the situation and report what you say to other coworkers.
About this article
Contributor(s): Meredith Walters, MBA. Meredith Walters is a certified career coach who helps people develop the skills they need to find interesting, fulfilling jobs. She has over 8 years of experience in career and personal coaching, including coaching at the Goizueta School of Business (Emory University) and the U.S. Peace Corps. She is a former board member of the Georgia chapter of the International Coaching Federation. She received her coaching degree from New Ventures West and her MBA from the University of San Francisco. Number of views of this article: 14 213.
How to avoid conflict at work – communicate properly
Even the most well-adjusted people find it difficult to avoid conflicts with co-workers at work. At the same time, after heated arguments, some of us make enemies for ourselves, while others – know how to keep a comfortable office relationship with opponents. Refine your communication tactics.
To prevent all potential disagreements is, unfortunately, an impossible task. Therefore, 86% of the staff tries to solve conflicts with colleagues independently, 5% – seek help from colleagues, 2% – need the support of their managers.
Let us name the two most common causes of service conflicts. The first is related to miscalculations of bosses, and the second to employee habits and attitudes. So, in most cases, the confrontation is a consequence of:
- Inability of the boss to competently manage the personnel entrusted to him (especially in periods of innovation);
- not clearly defined job responsibilities (some professionals are cool, and others, as they say, working for themselves and that guy)
- personal disposition of the boss – his indulgence or partiality to a certain circle of subordinates (all the mistakes are forgiven to the favorites, and the others – for the slightest inaccuracy are strictly questioned)
- different attitudes of employees to the performance of their duties (some always work diligently, and others – with their hands down), incompatibility of psychological types of people who have to constantly interact due to their duty
- habits of team members (for example, opening a window or turning on the air conditioner).
I must add: problems tend to accumulate and arithmetically multiply the irritation and dissatisfaction of staff. Worst of all, it can last (depending on the type of temperament, character and beliefs of people) for weeks, months or even years.
The final straw that overwhelms patience are three catalysts of workplace conflicts:
- Arable fatigue;
- “current” dissatisfaction of the boss;
- personal problems (health or family).
In order to prevent situational and/or unconstructive quarrels, psychologists recommend not collecting the facts, but immediately talking about the difficulties.
Tip. Do not hurry to dump your grievances on the head of a coworker – prepare him for a dialogue. To do this, say: “I want to discuss with you an urgent work issue for me. Let’s agree on a convenient time for us to talk.
Communication will be productive if you first think through the details of the conversation and pick strong arguments.
Then, in a friendly and collegial style, set out the essence of the case, while avoiding criticism and do not bring up the mistakes of a vis-a-vis. Then listen to the views of a colleague and try to understand the logic of his actions, and most importantly and difficultly – try to mentally take his side. And only then develop a joint algorithm of action to eliminate the causes of misunderstanding.
Note: if the employee frequently uses turns-doubts (“maybe,” “most likely,” “I assume”), then he is not ready for a dialogue or is not sure he is right. Accordingly, you can assert your position more forcefully, but correctly.
Also, keep in mind that the plan of your monologue can be “corrected” by your opponent’s irascibility and cause a similar reaction from you. In short, if the situation heats up, then move on to strategic cunning.
When your colleague begins to emotionally express his grievances in a friendly way, ask and/or state: “You don’t agree with what I said”, “I’m ready to listen to your point of view”, “let’s solve the problem together”…
If the conversation takes a serious turn and is approaching boiling point – defuse the situation, so as not to lead to a confrontation. Competent behavior in conflicts at work, or rather the use of several effective techniques – will allow you to avoid misunderstandings in communication.
Reschedule an unpleasant conversation. Refer to the urgent task and offer to discuss the situation later – at least in half an hour, or better the next day. This will give an opportunity to analyze the validity of the claim and to think about their counterarguments, plus support them with facts.
Tip . If it was not possible to postpone a difficult conversation, then prevent a quarrel will help phrases: “I understand that you do not agree with my words (actions), so I am ready to discuss the problematic moment”; “Let’s calmly deal with a controversial issue and find a common solution”; “I understand the reason for your claims. Please listen to my arguments as well, and then together we will work out the best plan of action”.
Do not raise your voice, and speak slightly slower than usual. This tactic allows you to contain your emotions, both for you and your opponent. In addition, increase the chances to hear each other and not to say unpleasant words, that is, prevent a quarrel.
Ignore the rudeness. Being rude indicates that the subject is ill-mannered and unsure of his arguments and rightness (read more in the publication “Rudeness at work: how to subdue a rude person”).
Apply the rule of three yeses. Be sure to tell your coworker that you respect his professionalism and work experience. Then select from your interlocutor’s statements three theses (or at least one) that you can agree with and approve them. Begin the discussion with the phrases: – “good idea”; – “share the point of view”; – “I understand”; – remember to give arguments “for”.
And only after that, give your alternative opinion. As a rule, disagreements immediately soften, and a productive dialogue begins.
Prohibition. Don’t use the “YOU-sentence” in your speech, such as:
- “you made a mistake.”
- “you didn’t do in a timely manner.”
- “you’re at fault”…
After all, your colleague will immediately remember all your mistakes, and the exchange of “hooks” will begin. It is much more effective to put the words “I understand that you…” in the first place in the monologue. Thus, you signal that you have heard the thought of the interlocutor, and he will respond with the same and willingness to understand the counterproposal.
Make a joke. Try to defuse the situation with a joke (it is better if it is businesslike, that is, in unison with the topic at hand) and smile (a smile is often a lifeline during the heat of passion).
If a conflict with a colleague could not be avoided – you argued, then you must reconcile. Do not rush to do this in a minute, first calm yourself and give your opponent time for this.
A few simple and very effective actions will help you
- Dynamic going up and down the stairs from the first to the last floor – preferably several times;
- A quick walk around the office building – 10 to 15 minutes;
- A light snack, but no coffee or strong tea;
- Complaining about the open water tap in the sanitary room.
If you are unhappy about something, don’t clarify things right away – announcing the conversation will help avoid misunderstandings. Calmly and kindly offer your colleague to discuss the important issue when he is free.
When the emotional heat subsides – most of us are looking for an opportunity to soften the differences, and are always happy to reconcile. So don’t give much thought to the question, “How to behave with a colleague after a conflict” – start with a friendly greeting in the morning.
It is important to remember: only individuals who are not ready to work in a team regard the offer “to sheath the sword” as a weakness of the opponent.
In practice, it does not matter who makes the move. The main thing is that you both acknowledge your mistakes – temper, hotness, intemperance in arguments. And then you can calmly discuss the excess and find a “common denominator.
It should also be noted: the willingness to admit their blunders is a signal of understanding that comfortable relations in the team are built on the basis of benevolent contacts.
- “We had a fight – it bothers me.”
- “I was puzzled by what you said, so I want to know and understand what you don’t like or don’t fit.”
- “If you don’t mind, I’ll justify my position and then listen carefully to your opinion. Let’s find a compromise.”
- An open smile and a “have a good day” wish in the morning.
- Attention-surprise: two brewed cups of coffee (tea) – for yourself and a colleague, and a chocolate candy will improve your mood.
- The phrase “let’s make up”.
5 signs that they do not want to make up:
- – The offer of a truce is received with extreme restraint;
- A comrade-in-arms looks over your head or away, and the look is very hard;
- he answers in a chillingly cold tone;
- the co-worker’s speech (and this is the main one) boils down to a list of things you are guilty of, such as being wrong, talking nonsense, or not controlling the volume of your voice;
- The employee believes that the source of the conflict is only you; – absolutely does not recognize his “investment” in the strife; – puts forward special conditions for satisfaction.
Remember: such people (they are in the minority) in principle are not ready for teamwork. But there is no way out, in the line of duty you will have to communicate – to say hello and solve production issues. There is one piece of advice here: be as discreet and tactful as possible.
Recommendations on how to communicate during a conflict at work with a colleague from psychologist Svetlana Lutsenko.
When managing conflicts, one of the main skills (for both specialists and managers) is the ability to compromise and find consensus in controversial situations. After all, it determines the coherence of the team and the effectiveness of the production process. Therefore, try to stick to the six rules.
Do not get into personalities. If you want to keep benevolent relations with a colleague, do not point out his weaknesses – office disputes are forgotten, and offenses are unlikely.
Do not criticize or analyze the missteps of a vis-a-vis. If you do not agree with the proposed concept, it will be enough to note that you do not have confidence in its full effectiveness.
Do not hurt your ego. If you reject the idea, do it very correctly.
Do not provoke and do not give in to provocation. If you are sure that the remark from a coworker will lead to confrontation, then turn everything into a joke, for example, ask not to worry about what a contagion you are.
Don’t be afraid to tell your supervisor about any difficulties you have. If he truly understands his job duties, he will settle the misunderstanding, because the conflicts at work with colleagues affect the results and performance of the team.
Do not harbor grudges. Such behavior is destructive to the psyche of any individual.