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The Biggest Problem In Your Department

Aug 17, 2007

Yes, that's right; the people in your workplace are, well, people. We sometimes lose sight of this fact. It would do us a world of good if we remembered this little piece of information once in a while. And yes, these "people" are just like us. They are here to earn a living. They have good days. They have bad days. They even have the occasional emotional outburst. Not that we would ever do something like that!

Work is a place where we can really leverage our ability and see magical things happen. We can derive great satisfaction from seeing something achieved. However, it is rare that we can do it all alone. Usually, every achievement is the result of many tiny cogs working together to generate the result. Your co-workers, you and me; we are all tiny cogs in a larger entity, called the workplace.

The workplace is where each worker brings their unique contribution. We are all employed to produce something (usually more profits) for our employer. But this production can only occur as each of us brings our contribution. Although we each may have ambitions and targets to reach, in this place we need to work together for the good of the company.

Difficulties will arise in the workplace; we are all just people after all. We often have strong opinions on what needs to be done. However, not everyone is going to agree with us. When we encounter these kinds of issues we usually choose to fight or run away. There is another option that we often forget about. The other option; take a look at the situation from a new perspective. We understand this perspective in sport, but we often forget it in the workplace.

Play the ball, not the man. Do you remember your coach drilling that rule into you? This sage advice is just as relevant in what we face at work. There is no point attacking the person's behaviour. They are people just like us remember? Rather than attacking them, the better option is to play the ball. What is the position here and what is at stake? What is the best result for the employer, for my co-worker and for me? If you emotionally respond to the co-worker you may win a minor tactical victory, but in the overall strategy everyone has lost. And remember, they may just be having a bad day. I'm had them, I'm sure you have too. We all do from time to time.
About the Author
Written by Damian Driessen of IT Metrix. Are you keeping on top of your management workload? Learn the simple techniques to take control of your job once and for all. Find out for yourself today at www.itmetrix.com.
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