How to Beat Office Politics

Know What You Want

Know What You Want

Office politics getting you down? You’re not alone. Getting caught up in workplace drama can be distracting at best. At worst, it can impact the future of your career.

However, it’s important to remember that if you are a top performer, you can (and should) rise above it. Here are some ways to keep out of trouble.

Know What You Want

A common theme in workplace success is knowing what you want. Before you get sucked up into office politics, be sure you’re clear on what it is you’re striving to accomplish. If you get caught in the whirlwind, that clarity will help keep you on course. Keeping your eye on the business objectives will always provide you a chance for victory.

Avoid Taking Sides

It may be hard to stay out of politicking when two power figures are going head to head, but it’s important that you do. Again, focus on the business objectives because ultimately, everyone wants the business to succeed and it’s hard to argue with someone striving for that independently. Ensure all communication with “both sides” is transparent so that you can avoid “he said/she said” games. When all else fails, keep your head down and focus on the tasks at hand.

Don’t Get Personal

You may find yourself getting frustrated by the office politics swirling around you. By nature of the beast, you will take sides, at least internally. You may grow angry with some people and want to defend others. Stay true to your office allies and never speak cruelly to someone you disagree with. Crossing the line of professionalism will brand you difficult to work with and will decrease your chances of recognition, regardless of whether you’re a top performer or not.

No one wants to work in an environment where people are trying to outwit their peers and mow down their perceived competition to make it to the top. But it happens. All you can do is try your best to stay on the outside and be a neutral performer with company success as your ultimate goal.

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