How to Excel at Work without Building Resentment
You're committed to doing the best work you can. You're smart and hardworking and want to excel. But as you move ahead and make progress, you begin to detect a little resentment coming from your coworkers. At first you try to ignore it, then you start to get angry and frustrated. You're tempted to confront it head- on, but aren't sure if that's the right move or not. What's the right strategy?
While there are no hard and fast rules, and every situation may be different, the following four strategies can minimize the problem and lay the groundwork for a healthier working environment.
Communicate Openly and Often
As soon as things seem to be breaking for you, get in and stay in communication with your coworkers. Let them know that while you seem to be getting the deals, moving ahead and getting promoted, that your relationship with them is and will continue to be of utmost importance to you.
Then it is imperative that you walk your talk! Even if you have to stay late or go the extra mile, make certain that you maintain open lines of communication with everyone. If you notice anything that even smells like resentment or anger, stop and address it.
Acknowledge People's Good Work
Take every opportunity to sincerely acknowledge your co-workers for a job well done. Hopefully, you have been doing this all along so it won't appear manipulative if you start doing it once you’ve moved up. Email them with your acknowledgment; copy their supervisors -- or yours, if appropriate. If people compliment you on a strategy or an idea that you learned from someone you worked with, make certain that you give the former coworker credit.
Include Others on Projects
Take every opportunity to bring in former coworkers on projects or plans. This will let them know that you are not out to leave them in the dust. Help them understand that having you now in a position of authority will actually serve them well. You might put in a good word for them, or support their ideas — when you truly can. Let them know that, while you cannot compromise your values or your integrity, you will make certain that their ideas get the full attention that they deserve.
Keep Your Sense of Humor — Especially About Yourself
Sometimes when we become more successful in our endeavors, we have a tendency to think we then need to be serious and more "professional." The problem is¬ we may have a misguided image of what that word means. The most successful and professional people know how to laugh at themselves. In life we follow people who are authentic; we want to be on their team, to support them and be supported by them. When we are authentic, care about others and allow our sense of humor to influence our daily interactions, we are establishing rapport. The more rapport, the better our relationships and the greater influence we may ultimately have.
By Linda Larsen, C.S.P.
Contact Linda Now
Linda Larsen, C.S.P., helps individuals think strategically, communicate effectively and celebrate success. She is an international keynote speaker, trial consultant and author of the book, “True Power,” and the best-selling audio program, “12 Secrets to High Self-Esteem.” She can be reached at lindalarsen.com or 941.927.4700.