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01 March 2009
Make an effort to attend formal functions
Large organizations like to organize functions for their employees or charity purposes. Make an effort to attend some of these functions, if not all. There is no use making up excuses as you will be found out later.
Do not raise conspicuous in your absence. People like to make guesses about those who are not around in any formal function. To the extreme, you will be branded as a ‘lone ranger’ or a ‘non team player’. This will hinder your career in future.
The best way is to attend the functions. Show your face to some very important people, shake some hands, say ‘hello’ to some office politicians and then make an early exit! It will be better if you can manage to get yourself photographed with some important people or co-workers (a proof to show your presence).
Develop good rapport with co-workers
Co-workers are important in a working environment. You will be able to learn many things from them. Co-workers are also the ones that will back you up whenever you face problems.
That is why you need to establish good rapport with your co-workers. No matter where you work, showing respect to them. You do not have to ‘butter’ them with anything. Just a friendly smile and greeting in the morning will do.
Treat everyone respectfully. Keep a smile on your face even though you are busy. Do not allow office politicians to have the chance to ruin your relationship with your co-workers.
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Be wary of tactics used by office politicians
Office politicians are always full of ideas to promote themselves; even if it means sacrificing others. You just cannot ignore them. You just have to be careful at all times.
Be aware of your work relationships in any office politic game. You will find that certain people have ‘double faces’. They will not mind betraying others to get what they want; be it a little attention or the coming ‘important’ projects.
What are some of the tactics office politicians used? Some of the certain tactics are very clear while some are hidden. There will be office gossiping, backstabbing, buck-passing, buttering up the boss, trouble-making, etc.
The hidden ones will be sending and forwarding chained ‘poison’ mails to co-workers and bosses, sending faxes, short messaging and etc to degrade someone in the organization.
There is no way to outplay office politicians; they are there long before you join the organization. Just take care of yourself!
Never criticize co-workers’ work openly
Criticizing a co-worker’s work openly is like sentencing yourself to an isolated island for life! You will be boycotted by other co-workers who are friends with this co-worker. Unless you can manage your projects without any help, otherwise, do not open your mouth at all.
Always be pleasant even when you receive poor grade works from your co-workers. Tell them to redo the work tactfully. Praise them if you need to but do not over do it.
Praising openly is better than criticizing. However, you will never know who is listening. The best way is to be as pleasant as you can and always go to work with an open attitude.
Office politics is not something one can ignore easily especially when there are more than two people working together in an organization. You may scorn at those who use office politics to be successful; yet, the very same game can help to promote to your own cause.
Many bosses like to be buttered up by his/her subordinates (Many, not all). That is why some office politicians are quite successful in their ‘careers’; whether you like it or not.
Skillful office politicians rise faster in their career than real politicians.
Observe the basics of office politics
The first and basic of office politics is when your co-workers grouped together to flatter the boss. They want to get on the good side of the boss so they will agree with whatever the boss says.
Do not get involve with these co-workers before you know what they are up to. A newbie in office politics must observe quietly. You will be able to learn who’s who and who has the last say. It is very interesting!
Do not choose sides openly. Even if your friends are involved actively, be reminded not to join them; at least, not openly.
Socialize with your co-workers
This is the way to get along with your co-workers. Let them know that you have no intention of joining them in their office games but you are willing to socialize with them. Join them for lunches and tea breaks when you are invited to.
Avoid talking about work during social outings. Some people just do not know how to relax. Be polite and courteous to everyone. Be tactful; but with enough diplomacy to avoid alienating them.
You may need to distinguish the invites by some co-workers are just being friendly instead of playing office politics. Do not upset them by being suspicious of their good intentions. That is why quiet observation works best to know who’s who in an office!