Monday, August 17, 2009

Office Politics

Office politics exists in every organization, small or large and no matter how much an organization tries to avoid it, it cannot be wished away. The reality is that where ever there are people working with and around each other, there will be personal and professional politics. From the first day of our career to the last day in office, office politics affects us all. Our performance at work, our relationships with superiors, peers and subordinates could be determined by office politics.

Office politics in broader sense, is a conflict arising out of personal and professional communication. It can be verbal or non verbal. Body language plays an integral part in office politics, both as a contributor and an inhibitor.

At work, there are often issues which we have very little control over. It’s not uncommon to find corporate policies, client demands or boss mandates which affects your personal interests. Bitching and complaining are common responses to these events that we cannot control. But other than making you a constant whiner or a person who is always negative, it seldom accomplishes anything.

Instead of feeling victimized and angry about the situation, focus on the things that you can do to change the situation. Remove the victimized feeling and allow others to see you as someone who knows how to operate within given constraints. You may not be able to change or decide on the eventual outcome, but you can walk away knowing that you have done the best within the given circumstances.

To win this game, you must build a network of allies which you can tap into. Another reason to hold back your temper is your career advancement. Many organizations are now moving towards using 360 degree reviews to promote someone. In this review, ll the other persons who are involved in day-today interactions with the employee are asked for their opinion on the working of the individual. And thus a few bad reports from them could ruin your plans for advancement even if you have performed very well.

So, be prepared to encounter some nasty bits while in your work career, but be confident and choose your own way out of this mess.