Workplace Politics

At an early age we learn a great deal about people from our interactions with other children on the playground. Hopefully this can help prepare us for the people who we will run into in the workforce. One of the most common types, “The Hall Monitor,” is a spineless creature who likes to tattle on others to gain favor with management. Often this type of person will move up along the ranks because they are willing to step on anyone to get to the top. This person is ruthless and will take credit for another person’s ideas and will make it a point to sabotage coworkers whenever the opportunity arises. Another all to familiar personality is “The slacker.” This person will go to great lengths to avoid working altogether. Often times they don’t realize it takes more work to hold their position of being lazy. This person is constantly hiding, taking breaks, or elongated lunches. When the work gets tough, they are nowhere to be found or they can be seen working at a snail’s pace. One person you will see who may not be quite as annoying is “Old Faithful,” that employee usually has been working since the existence of dinosaurs and has nothing special to offer other than consistency. They will usually never be more than a worker bee because they are mindless robots lacking in work place personality. Since we have discussed boring, we should cover “Drama Diva.” We are probably all picturing the young selfish girl who endlessly babbles about her problems while her repulsively long fake nails cradle her cell phone like a Venus Fly Trap. However, don’t be fooled, there are different ages of people who fall into this category. These people tend to dominate the conversation with their problems and eyebrow raising stories. They never shut up, and their stories become increasingly obscene over time. Their very presence makes you feel like a therapist who should be getting paid overtime. Let’s not forget “Bozo,” the entertainer who thinks that they are a comedian. This person comes to work solely for self entertainment and they believe that everyone thinks they are humorous as well. It is like a drunk person who believes they are the life of the party, when in truth, most people wish their mouth was padlocked. Often in management you see the “know-it-all,” they come in two forms the Chameleon and the Drill Sergeant. The Chameleon tries to get their way in a more subtle fashion and is more concerned with blending into the pack. You probably need to keep a closer eye on this boss. They are better at concealing their motives and they have a way of being sneaky. They will stab you in the back with a smile on their face. You never really know where you stand with this type. The Sergeant has a “their way or the highway” brute force attitude, it is all work and no play. You had better follow the rules or they will be breathing down your neck. There are many personalities in the work force blended like a recipe gone wrong, if you consume it, it will leave a bad taste in your mouth. There is a hard lesson that I have learned in the work force, other than not a lot has changed since the days on the playground. It is that often people who are not qualified will land a job over others because of who they know- “Name Droppers.” Don’t be surprised, it is just work place politics!

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