By Evan Vitale
Some of us can relate to this situation: we love our job, but we can’t stand to work with so-and-so on a daily basis.
Yes, at times, it’s hard to get along with everyone or understand why other people are difficult to work with, annoying, negative, etc. Everyone has their own personality, habits and mannerisms and we have to figure out how to deal with that person or start looking for another job.
Since we don’t know what a future job holds (you might have two difficult people to deal with at a new job), it’s probably better to figure out how to deal with a current co-worker and stick with the job that you like.
If the conflict is small, you can probably work one-on-one with your difficult co-worker. If the problem is much larger, you may have no alternative than to talk to a manager or to someone in your company’s human resources department.
A good way to start solving the problem is to talk to the co-worker privately. Suggest a coffee break or lunch together. Be careful how you present your problem as you certainly don’t want to make matters worse! Don’t sound frustrated or mad. Be caring and cautious. Communication is a huge key in solving any conflict.
Once you have had a discussion with your co-worker – and the problem continues – then it’s time to consider speaking to your manager about the issue. Here you will find some managers won’t have the interest, time or energy to deal with small personality conflicts, while others will be helpful and will try to find a solution.
If the matter is more serious (i.e., sexual harassment), then you need to speak with your supervisor immediately about the problem. If your manager is acting inappropriately, then you need to discuss the matter with the manager’s boss or with your human resources department.