Things I can't believe people say and do at work

Ideas on handling tough situations in the work place

The other day at work I went upstairs to discuss business with a coworker.  After a few minutes we were interrupted by another associate complaining annoyingly, "it happened again!"  Out of nowhere, my coworker asked if "the poopyman" had struck again.  I couldn't believe what I was hearing!  Apparently there had been some disgruntled employee who had been throwing feces around the bathroom and hall; this wasn't the first time it happened either!  No one had been able to figure out who did since the perpetrator had been avoiding the security cameras.  Poo would just appear in places that it shouldn't be and some poor staff member would have to clean it up.  It really made me question why someone would deal with their work related problems in such a way.  It just creates more work for your coworkers and creates more problems for everyone else.

So in light of that disgusting and kind of funny situation, I've been thinking of ways to maintain a positive environment at the workplace.  Not only do you need to maximize your capacity and productivity, but you will also need to sharpen your communication skills.  It will help you promote yourself in so many ways, including your diversifying your experience and building your professionalism. Distinguishing you from your colleagues could mean the difference in an important promotion or raise.


"But I can't do that!"

Instead of saying "I don't know how" or "I can't," you should look into finding more information, direction, or solutions.  When a difficult project is assigned to you and you lack the resources to complete it, you should still accept the project and remain positive.  Focus on the areas that you're familiar with and explain that you may need more time (resources, staffs, training, etc) to complete the project.


"You're questioning my work?"

You should never aggressively defend yourself when your boss or colleagues have questions or challenge you.  I find that directing the flow of the conversation into something positive is a good way to handle a negative situation.  I may say something like "I very much appreciate and value your opinion, but I strongly believe in the approach I'm taking with my project."  It's also important to base your statements on facts and not opinion, or hearsay.  If you have data to prove that a coworker is underperforming, you should still remain positive when correcting the situation.


"I will try it your way, but don't blame me if it doesn't work"

Perhaps I didn't have to try it the way my coworker was proposing?  At the very least I should look for common ground, or some positive aspects of what my colleague was proposing.  Instead of negatively pinpointing the problem, I may say something like "I agree we need to change our tactics, but I still have questions and feel uncertain about a few things, perhaps we should discuss them..."


"You never..." or "He/She won't do anything about that... "

Avoid generic accusations such as these for they will only display your negativity and unwillingness to work with others.  It drives your colleagues away especially when they sees that you are difficult to work with.


"I'm drowning in work!"

No matter how busy you are and overtime is needed, you will still need to be humble and keep to yourself.  Never boast or overate the things that you do.  You may not do it intentionally, but others around you will take it differently.