You will work with a lot of different people throughout your career. Each of them will have a unique personality that you may or may not gel with. If you get along, everything’s great. But when you don’t, things can get frustrating very quickly. What do you do when you don’t like working with another employee and you butt heads over the smallest things? Before you take drastic measures, like quitting, consider these tips for working with difficult people.

Be Empathetic

Empathy is an essential skill for every aspect of your life. Before you take time to confront a coworker over an issue, try to consider it from their perspective. Put yourself in their shoes and when discussing the matter, acknowledge their feelings first. Then take time to calmly discuss the problem and determine a solution for all of you.

Be Direct

The avoidance of conflict has become a national pastime for many professionals. But when you’re so worried about confrontation, you may slide into passive-aggressive behavior instead. Clear, direct communication is still better when you want to understand the problem and work out a solution. Don’t try to soften the question by dancing around it too much. Be clear and ask the question you want to be answered.

Establish Boundaries  

It is completely okay to decide that certain topics are off-limits in the workplace. You may also decide that you don’t need to spend time with certain people in the office. Professional boundaries are important. For example, you should feel okay saying no when someone asks you to accomplish a task that you don’t feel comfortable with.  

Avoid Office Politics

To avoid a problem with conflict in the workplace, it’s a good idea to stay away from office politics. A rumor mill is not productive and can exacerbate any negative interactions you have with coworkers. Politely decline to participate in gossip and keep yourself involved in your work at hand instead.

Do you want more ideas for managing conflict with your coworkers? ProStaff can help, so call us today.