How To Deal With Nuisance At Workplace
For most people, work takes up a huge chunk of their time. Most of us spend a significant portion of our waking hours at work. In every workplace, you will find different types of coworkers. Some coworkers will be difficult, some will be passive or aggressive, some will be annoying and some will be most obnoxious.
Dealing with such type of coworkers is a skill worth perfecting and dealing with difficult situations at work is challenging, yet rewarding.
Although it is sad, there is no doubt that the majority of people have experienced some form of nuisance behaviour in their place of work which has had an impact on their well-being, regardless of whether or not it would be classed as sexual and mental harassment.
While this article is not about trying to help people overcome the significant implications of serious abuse, our aim is to highlight a wide range of ‘nuisance behaviour’ at work and offer some strategies for how to deal with this.
So if you feel that in any way this is being compromised, here are some practical tips to help deal with nuisance or challenging behaviour that may be starting to impact on your ability to enjoy and feel totally secure in your place of work.
12 Ways To Deal With Nuisance At Workplace
Studies have shown that a good way to boost confidence is to focus on your strengths rather than your weaknesses. The more you can give off a confident aura, the more this tends to impact on the way others treat you. Your own confidence will help you to deal with nuisance or challenging behaviour of your coworkers.
Building confidence does not require a complete personality overhaul. Instead, you can take smaller steps to become more self-assured and boost your confidence. This doesn’t necessarily come naturally to a lot of people, but the more work you can do on building your own sense of self-belief, the more confident and strong your inner-self is, the more likely you are to be able to handle the majority of unexpected situations: to stand your ground and clearly communicate your perspective.
It Is Your Choice – “How To Respond”
Whatever the behaviour is that is being directed at you, now you have to decide how to respond to that? The realization that the ball is in your court when choosing how to respond can be very empowering. Sit calm with fear does not change the circumstances.
Gauge the situation and as much as possible choose how to respond – this can range from calm but assertive “I would prefer it if…” to choosing to say nothing at all. We can't control how people act, but we have 100 percent control over how we react to them.
Now it is up to you to decide whether you want to keep calm and promote it or at the same time answer its nuisance with diplomacy so that they themselves understand that what they are doing is wrong and don’t try to do it again.
Try Not To Let Matters Escalate
So many scenarios of nuisance behaviour and harassment in the workplace end up enduring and escalating if they are left unchecked – either because the victim of this behaviour is hoping that by doing nothing it will eventually stop and doesn’t want to cause a fuss or is intimidated by the perpetrator and too scared to challenge their behaviour for fear of making matters worse or even losing their job.
But it's not good at all. Set boundaries first and tries to change this situation as soon as possible. Don’t be a martyr, speak up or things will worsen for you. Take action in some form or the issues will magnify.
This way you are making your feelings clear, you are creating an opportunity for this person to change their behaviour, and vastly increasing the chances of the behaviour stopping altogether.
Avoid Being Alone With That Person
Try to avoid being alone with your colleague who tries to fuss with you. Make sure you are always around other people who can witness the nuisance behaviour.
Ask your manager or higher authority for tasks that don’t require you to be alone with that colleague. Ask to be reassigned to a different team if necessary.
Don’t Feel Guilty
You have the right to speak up without feeling remorseful later. If you have done your best to be polite and compassionate, you are doing the right thing.
But if it is not working then you are not guilty. Talk to your coworker privately and allow them dignity. Avoid spreading ill will. Kindness goes a long way and maybe you will be working around this person for weeks, months or years.
Overcome Your Fear of Confrontation and Conflict
Confronting a coworker is never easy, but it's often needed if you want to stick up for your rights at work. Whether the confrontation is over shared credit, irritating coworker habits, differing approaches, or about how to keep a project on track, sometimes you need to hold a confrontation with a coworker.
Although confrontation should not be your first step, you can become better and more comfortable with necessary conflict. This will help you feel more comfortable when you need to confront a coworker.
Put Your Foot Down
Know your boundaries, and make sure they are clear to your coworkers also. Even after doing so, if you are facing nuisance behaviour then and becomes abusive or otherwise inappropriate for a professional setting, make a complaint. You are doing this show the person that your boundaries are far beyond what he thought.
Don't allow it to become personal. A complaint about inappropriate behaviour in the workplace should not become a laundry list of every nasty thing the person has ever done to you. Keep it concise and professional.
Yes, there will be a backlash. Be ready for it, and don't take it to heart. You might just find that others start putting their foot down as well.
Use Humor to Defuse a Situation
While this type of tactic can work for some people, not everyone is able to make a humorous comment to defuse a situation spontaneously.
A light bit of humour might be the tactic for you if you have a funny side.
Talk To A Friend
A little unbiased opinion is never harmful, so talking over your coworker situation with any of your friends except office colleagues can be a good idea.
It not only lets you vent your frustrations but can give you an unbiased opinion of what may be going on and how to handle the situation.
There is a request that in spite of all your efforts, if it is not going to stop, then do not try to deal alone with any such nuisance behaviour. Talk to friends, supportive colleagues, and very importantly - where necessary - people of influence.
The more you do this in the spirit of trying to find a solution and improve your day to day working existence, the more genuine support and advice you will get and the less likely there will be a long-term negative impact.
Go To Your Boss
No one likes to do this, but sometimes there is no other choice if your requests to your toxic coworker have fallen on deaf ears. If you do decide to take the matter up with your boss, make sure to go armed with the information you need to make your case.
Take notes on how this person’s actions are affecting your work and productivity on projects, and write down exactly what that person is doing to adversely affect your work.
And if all else fails?
If you have tried all of the above and the situation is still an issue, be prepared to walk away in the knowledge that you have given it your best shot and have undoubtedly gone through a great deal of unwanted stress in the process.
If you have exhausted all avenues, have the courage to walk away with your head held high. Learn from this experience, share it with others and anticipate that better things will be around the corner.
If the good wins, stop complaining and get back to work. Backtrack on these recommended steps and retry some of them when appropriate. If the bad wins, redirect your energy to leaving your current employment. You'll be glad you did. You can find out how to conduct a stealth job search and much more about job searching with these resources.
What advice do you have for dealing with nuisance at the workplace? Please leave your reply in the comment box below.