Bitchy bosses, catty coworkers and projects that just keep piling up? Eek. Sometimes surviving the craziness at work can put a real damper on your outlook and confidence. Survive the worst situations, with a smile.
Problem: Your coworker always puts you down or makes you look bad in front of your bosses.
Nothing worse than a one-upper or a snarky team-member who is so not on your side. The next time they try to down you, just ignore. Yep, as playground as it sounds, this employee is probably just insecure and trying to nitpick you to make themselves look good. But you should take their criticism a bit seriously. If they called your spreadsheet disorganized or didn’t like your project idea, reevaluate. Was there any truth behind what they said?
Ask your catty cubicle-mate what they would suggest to make it better. Asking for his/her opinion shows you value their input (and for the insecure ego-maniacs, this is a serious way to win them over). Whatever you do, don’t fire back with a snappy remark when you feel slighted. Stand up for yourself by explaining your process for getting things accomplished, showing everyone that you are competent and organized.
Problem: Your immature intern is totally disrespectful, ignoring directions and G-Chatting all day.
Yes, your intern may be doing this for school credit or little compensation, but that’s no reason for them to slack off. If you’re giving projects to your junior employee that aren’t getting done, call a meeting and ask him/her to show you how they’re completing things. You might have to provide some guidance to make sure projects get done efficiently.
If your intern is lackadaisical for lack of things to do, make a list of items you’ve always wished you had time to accomplish: organizing your file cabinets, creating a cohesive spreadsheet for your contacts, or researching new ideas in similar companies are always great to-dos for those just starting out. If your ‘tern gives you ‘tude about handling tiny tasks, it may be time to give them the boot.
Problem: You’ve got a lot of stressful stuff going on and you feel like it’s really affecting your work performance.
Yep, whether it’s a bad break-up or constant fighting with a psycho roommate, we’ve all got personal problems. The main thing to remember is: try to keep your personal life as outside of the office as possible. When your boss asks you how you are, do not launch into a tirade about how much money your best friend’s destination wedding is going to cost you. Chances are, she doesn’t care and will interpret your story as whining.
If you’re feeling particularly overwhelmed, go outside for a few and call your best friend, or head to the bathroom for a good cry. If the issues are super-serious it is okay to take a mental health day every once in a while (but no matter how chaotic your life is, please limit the “personal days” to a bare minimum). Clear your mind with some alone time and get revved-up to head back to the office with a new outlook.
Problem: Your boss is a cold, heartless bee-hatch. From never-complimenting you to constantly demanding coffee, you’re not sure if she’s, er, human.
Sigh. Who hasn’t worked for a super-diva boss at some point in her life? Totally sucks but spend a sec in her shoes. Maybe she’s sending you to Starbucks ‘cause she’s too swamped to even spare a minute. And yes, she might be a little harsh (was screaming at you in front of half the company for that typo really necessary?), but keep in mind how stressed she must be.
Make life a little easier for her (and yourself) and treat her like an absolute queen. Every time you head out, ask her if she needs anything. If she seems slammed, send her an email or IM asking her what you can do to help instead of hovering by her desk. No matter what, she’ll appreciate the thought.
Problem: The projects keep piling up. Yeah, you want to get everything done and you don’t want to look like a slacker, but can you ever say no?
Let’s be honest: just about everyone in today’s economy is overworked. That said, sometimes the difference between an awesome work ethic and putting too much on your plate can be kind of thin. Get organized and prioritize. List things in the order they need your attention and cross them off your list as you go along (such a great feeling). Delegate tasks like research, simple spreadsheeting or organization to an intern or assistant.
If you’re still overworked to the point of absolute imbalance and panic, it’s okay to approach your manager with a list of what you’ve been up to and what’s still on your plate. You don’t have to say no—your boss might have a different idea for handling the tasks or maybe they’ll put some things on the back-burner for the future. And most important, don’t forget to de-stress with a good gym workout, calming walk or an uplifting chat with a positive pal.
Let it out, ladies! What’s the worst work situation you’ve ever been in? Leave us a comment below if you’re still in a bad work sitch and we could answer YOUR problem on Sheckys.com!