Worst Co-Worker Types
One of the best aspects of working from home is avoiding all the worst personality types at your job. When it’s time to physically clock back in again, you might find yourself ill-equipped to deal with your over-demanding boss or that creepy guy who complains about everything.
Well, you might not be able to work from home forever. So, here are some tips on how to navigate the minefield of office personalities that’s waiting for you. Just try to keep in mind that you might be one of these people, too.
Dealing with Difficult Coworkers
1. The Expert
Every job has someone who thinks they know it all. They’re over-confident in their knowledge and skills. They’ve also got an opinion about everything you say and do. This person is never wrong, and they’ve always got a story to tell about how they saved the day.
The expert seeks validation and that can work to your advantage. If you massage their ego, you can get them to help you with tasks around the office. Just be prepared for them to take all the credit in the end. Don’t waste your time trying to convince them that they’re wrong because they’ll just get defensive. It’s best to let them continue being the hero in their own world.
2. The Submissive Person
You’ve probably encountered someone at work who doesn’t’ want to make waves or offend anyone by having a definite opinion. These people never offer their own ideas, and you never quite know where they stand. They don’t like to agree, and they don’t like to disagree. They just go with the flow.
Submissive co-workers aren’t the worst of the bunch. They’re just not that helpful when a problem arises. So, don’t look to them for solutions; just utilize their willingness to cooperate. You need to understand that this person is fighting an internal battle with anxiety and they’re just trying to make it through the day. Give them a solid sense of direction and plenty of encouragement along the way.
3. The Tyrant Boss
Nobody wants to work for a dictator, but these types of people have a knack for working their way to the top of the food chain. They’re bullies and they know how to get their way. Tyrants are overly demanding and might even enjoy watching you squirm as they annihilate your self-esteem with brutal critiques of your performance.
To deal with tyrant bosses, you need to stay on top of your game. Don’t feed them your mistakes and don’t expect their praise either when you get something right. It’s best to consider them as a workplace hazard. Whatever you do, don’t try to go over their head and take them down. Tyrant bosses have worked hard to make themselves indispensable to your organization. So, even if your boss has a boss, trying to dethrone a tyrant will likely lead to your own demise.
4. The Auto “Yes” Person
Here’s another person whose survival instincts at work make for a terrible personality type. This person agrees to everything because it’s easier than saying “no”. They try to grab everything that comes their way, and they end up stressed out and agitated. They commit to everything and therefore, they rarely deliver on what is expected.
If you have to deal with the Auto “Yes” Person, give them a second chance to say “no”. If you need something from them, ask them if they’re sure that they can get it done on time. Their automatic response is “yes”, but with another chance at a response, they might come clean and say “no”. If that doesn’t work, then let them know that you’re available if they need some help along the way.
5. The Auto “No” Person
For every Yes Man, there is an Automatic “No” Person who doesn’t agree to help with anything. They are pessimistic about everything and will gladly watch the whole place burn to the ground. Saying “no” is how they survive at work and they’re not going to go the extra mile for anyone.
Believe it or not, there are times when the Auto “No” Person can be helpful. When you’re dealing with a difficult client or customer, the inflexibility of the Auto “No” Person might be exactly what you need. When a situation calls for negativity or a strategic pivot, call in the negativity specialist. Just be sure that they remain civil.
Try to Avoid Labeling People at Work
It’s one thing to be aware of the personality types that you deal with on a regular basis. It’s another thing to pigeonhole someone into a particular label. It can be extremely harmful. For example, if someone has a reputation for always saying “no”, then people might never give them an opportunity to act otherwise. Labeling co-workers and employees ignores their potential for growth.
As mentioned earlier, nearly all these personality types are due to workplace survival instincts. People behave in these specific patterns due to their reactive behavior and past experiences. These are human beings, not robots. It’s important for you to understand their point of view.
So, take a deep breath before you jump back into the work pool. It’s full of colorful personality types. Are you one of these personality types or are there a few that we missed?
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