Looking for advice from people that have worked in an office?


#1

It seems that I am looking for more prayers lately, and it makes me feel bad. My wife and I doing well, but it seems that things at work has changed. I was informed that I am not like by many at my office, because I am go-getter and someone that wants to achieve and I do not like failure. I was told that people see my achieveing for success as arrogant and I am not surte what to do. I love my job and I thought the people that I work with. Now it seems that I cannot trust anyone as unsure who feels this way about me. Now I can't get this thought out of my head and feel as though everyone hates me. I am not one that normaly cares what others think, but having people at work dislike you makes things tough. I work where many are complacient, and have no ambition to reach for success and I am the opposite. Has anyone had similar situations at work and how did you deal with them, or thoughts? Is there a Catholic way to deal with this?


#2

mkipp, The person that told you that is an underachiever and wants to just float through their job like a cork in the ocean. Those people never achieve anything and they get real jealous when others get promoted over them.

BOSSES LOVE hard working people! Only the lazy employees dislike the hard workers and laugh at them. They don't want people rocking the boat by showing the boss that the work can be done a lot faster.

I worked for many years in offices and I have seen some hard working people cry real tears of pain because they get verbally told off by someone who is jealous of them.

I remember a hard worker who said to me, "Am I that bad"? I said, "NO", that person is just jealous of you. That person was jealous of me too because I had a happy personality and she was a bitter woman.

Guess what? The overachiever kept getting one promotion after another until she was made president of a Company in another city. She was a great sucess story.
The bitter woman retired at the same place where she worked and died of cancer, went blind, and was alone in her senior years.
I chose not to stay in touch with her because she was so negative. Another worker told me what happened to her.

I have another story about an English professor who was made a Dean of Students in a College. Some students were really mean to him and wanted him to lose his job.
He cried to me too with the words of "why are these students being so mean to me"?.
I told him they were mean spirited students and to not pay attention to their negativity.
Those students that were mean to him ended up with sad loser lives. They didn't become successful workers in life.

The English Professor and I moved on to another college where he became Vice President of the college and I was happy as a career counselor at that college. We were always friends from the beginning when we met at the other school.

I used to hear people talking bad about me at times. I would just totally act like I didn't know they were talking bad about me eventhough I would hear them myself.
That is how I survived my career for many years until I retired. Some co-workers under-estimated my skills which gave me a way out of taking on extra responsibilites with no extra pay. I could have moved up in my career but I enjoyed the work I was doing so I stayed where I was at.

This is how I survived for many years at my office jobs. When someone would tell me that someone was saying something bad about me.... I would just say, "Thank you for letting me know" and just walk away. I would not say nothing bad about that person.
I would not confront that person either because maybe that person didn't say anything bad about me.
If someone argued about something with me that wasn't really important I would just say, "Ohhh...okay.... and just back off.

A co-worker who was well liked in the office would say that he would just show the palms of his hands and act confused and say... "I don't know"? It worked for him.

In the mornings before you go to work just say your protection prayers. Plus, play some music or listen to a tape of positive thinking and when you arrive at the office you will start your day in a great mood.

Don't let those gossipy, lazy, mean spirited people get you down. Run when they see you coming your way or say you are busy when they want to spend a lot of time with you just to slam dunk you.
Negative people are attracted to good workers and want to bring you down a notch and make you feel insecure. That is their goal. PEACE, LaLucia


#3

While I have not experienced this situation, I have seen it occur. I think you need to reflect upon your situation a little to determine if you are at fault at all or if they are just jealous of your dedication, hard work, and success. What I mean by at fault is that do you complete tasks in manner that makes someone else look bad? Are you overly critical of other’s work? Do you not offer to help others? Do you show up other people to get ahead? Etc.

Changing perceptions in the work place takes a lot of time. It is a slow process, but it can be done. I think that you should go about offering help/assistance to employees as best you can. If you complete your task really quickly, instead of going to management to get the next assignment right away, use some free time to assist another employee with their work if they need it. Help them produce better work and let them get the credit (they may say you helped them, but if they don’t, don’t worry about it). Enlist the help of others with some of your work. Give them credit to management if it is warranted.

In addition, socialize with the others in your office. Take an interest in their lives, ask how they are doing, be friendly.

Eventually perceptions will change.


#4

I was told that I am critical or judgmental of others and not that friendly. I do get frustrated with others as they hold me back from completing tasks at times. I guess I need advice on how to change the opinion of me at my office.


#5

Are you encouraging to those who lack motivation? Do you ever ask why they aren’t as motivated as you? Sometimes just gaining a basic perspective of their situation may help. Maybe there are obstacles or frustrations that they are dealing with that you are unaware of.
Ask them - How can I help this move along? I am motivated to see us all succeed here. Otherwise it can have the appearance of being competitive rather than teamwork (which is what you’re implying it should be since your work relies on the work of others.)


#6

[quote="mkipp, post:1, topic:198913"]
It seems that I am looking for more prayers lately, and it makes me feel bad. My wife and I doing well, but it seems that things at work has changed. I was informed that I am not like by many at my office, because I am go-getter and someone that wants to achieve and I do not like failure. I was told that people see my achieveing for success as arrogant and I am not surte what to do. I love my job and I thought the people that I work with. Now it seems that I cannot trust anyone as unsure who feels this way about me. Now I can't get this thought out of my head and feel as though everyone hates me. I am not one that normaly cares what others think, but having people at work dislike you makes things tough. I work where many are complacient, and have no ambition to reach for success and I am the opposite. Has anyone had similar situations at work and how did you deal with them, or thoughts? Is there a Catholic way to deal with this?

[/quote]

Coworkers can either be like family, friends or enemies you come to a truce with because there is no other choice. I've worked in offices for close to twenty years and have seen it all just about. From the boss who liked watching porno to coworkers who cursed each other openly (totally unprofessional). I work at a great company these days and have been there over a decade because of the family type environment. It's hard to find as it seems you have experienced. My advice is a act diplomatically. If they complain sit down and find out what the problems are. Some people will always want to complain about someone....there's always at least one of those. If that doesn't work try just giving it to God. It's hard to comment on the ambition part since we don't know your position or industry. Ambition can be a good thing in say Real Estate, Sales or Finance but may not get you too far in certain industries. Remember to treat everyone with respect and consideration....as a Christian. If they still complain you might just have to learn to put up with it or pray from guidence. Hope that helps.


#7

Do good work, SHARE the credit. Usually people see arrogance in co-workers who they do little favors for and never acknowlege them. For instance are you so focused you're "on the warpath" and a co-worker lets you use the copier ahead of them so you can finish? Do you ever pull from their research or customer base? Do you refuse to acknowlege or discuss your failures?

Most importantly, do you ever assign blame?

Where do you eat for lunch? Do you join in on office talk? Do you ever give someone a chance to help you instead of doing it yourself?

When you're opposed to laziness, make a few strong friends and allies, people that know they can count on you and whom you can count on. I'm certain you're not the only hard working person there. Also, don't act like a 5th grader who tells their mommy everyone hates them because 2 kids bullied them. Everyone dosn't hate you, you have a few people who are jealous. Don't make it into something it's not.


#8

Try to share credit and avoid blaming anyone. Don't isolate yourself from everyone else. Have a cheerful "good morning" and "bye" everyday. Consider getting a candy jar for your cubicle (worked wonders for me at all my office jobs!). Have lunch/coffee with the coworkers sometimes. Learn a little about each of their personal lives--when you have an idea of what is going on there you may feel less critical--and at the very least it will give you more insight into your coworkers. Don't believe everything you hear. Be positive and work hard. Good luck! :thumbsup:

KG


#9

This issue has really bothered me as people here think that I think that I am better than them. I do not think at all, and people have always said this about me. I do hold myself and family to a high standard, but I guess that it comes off the wrong way. Now I just feel paranoid that everyone dislikes me. I am only 31 and love working at my job, it just feels different since I learned what people think..


#10

I have questions that you don't need to answer here but you ought to think about it.

Is it the nature of your business that the employees are naturally in some kind of competition with each other? If you work in sales or have any sort of quotas then that might be the case. In such environments, anyone who works hard will be disliked by those who don't (either for lack of motivation or lack of ability). Short of changing the business environment there is not much you can do.

Is it the nature of your business that people have to collaborate on projects? If that is the case you need to understand that there will be a certain amount of bureaucratic wasted time (which management probably did not build into the projected schedule) in order for everyone to understand their pieces of the puzzle. If you are someone who naturally sees the big picture is may be easier (and faster) for you to do more than your share of the work because then you don't have to interact with others. That will win you the favor of management and the distrust of your peers because they will see you as stealing from their opportunity.

Do you work with more males or females? While there are no absolutes, men and women tend to have different styles of relating to others in an office environment. This has been my observation so take it with a grain of salt. But in general, women are more concerned with interoffice relationships and how personal lives impact work. They also tend to have a greater concern about rules and keeping track on who did what. Men are less concerned about tracking how things get done so long as they do get done.

Most offices are like families (as others have mentioned). And families expect you to take time away from other important matters to to spend time with the family. In an office environment that means sharing jokes, contributing to potlucks, knowing about outside events like marriages, births, deaths, etc. From a business point of view that is all very wasteful. You have to decide how much time you are willing to devote to the family. But understand there will be a cost no matter what you do.


#11

[quote="mkipp, post:4, topic:198913"]
I was told that I am critical or judgmental of others and not that friendly. I do get frustrated with others as they hold me back from completing tasks at times. I guess I need advice on how to change the opinion of me at my office.

[/quote]

A couple of thoughts, that just popped into my head:

Is a lot of your interaction with others through email or in person?

If it's email, you may need to to modify your writing style.

I think the issue you may be having in your communications is that you maybe need to dial things down a bit.

It's fine to be a go getter, but not at the expense of others.

If you have an issue with a co-worker, you may need to discuss things with your boss first, or your co-worker in a way that's constructive.


#12

[quote="mkipp, post:1, topic:198913"]
I was informed that I am not like by many at my office, because I am go-getter and someone that wants to achieve and I do not like failure. I was told that people see my achieveing for success as arrogant and I am not surte what to do. I love my job and I thought the people that I work with. Now it seems that I cannot trust anyone as unsure who feels this way about me. ?

[/quote]

you left out a key piece of information? who informed you of problems with your work and your work ethic? with what motive? in what context? If it was your immediate supervisor, your overall boss, your co-workers, or somebody who is after your job, you can see that might change things.

What was the actual wording of the criticism? as you state, or did you infer that attitude from the actual statement? that also changes how you respond.

yes I have worked in offices a good part of my life and yes I see this kind of thing all the time, my advice: consider the source. How do I respond? I do my job to the best of my ability, continually gaining and practicing new skills, trying to be more productive, encourage cross-training so nobody in one office "owns" one task to the extent the work will be hampered if they leave, train underlings and subordinates, and most of all, make my boss look good. When I am criticized by someone with authority over me I ask for specific areas where I can improve, and what specific outcomes or objectives they would like me to meet. I try not to guess and speculate "what did he mean by that?" but ask outright about their expectations.


#13

Well, you can start by not thinking of your co-workers as obstacles to success. If they are not as ambitious as you are, there may be good reasons.

Person A may just not be very bright. It’s not his fault if he was born less smart than you are.

Person B may be dealing with a lot of things at home. And now he has to deal with someone at work who is always impatient and thinks that he should do his work differently, in a different order maybe or a different speed. And person B doesn’t see why he should change how he works for someone else’s ambition, when he’s got all this other stuff going on.

Person C may be working to live rather than living to work. If he is doing his job in an acceptable manner as far as his boss is concerned, it can be a bit annoying when someone who is not his boss gets frustrated with him, because if you communicate that to Person B’s boss, Person B’s boss may change his expectations of him for a long time, whereas with your ambition you’ll be in and out of the office into a better job in no time.

Person D may be really focused on quality which slows him down sometimes, because he wants to do the job better than is strictly required.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s certainly possible that the person who told you that you are disliked was just a lazy person who hoped that lying to you about the feelings of your co-workers would make you feel bad enough to stop making him look bad. In which case you should ignore him and talk to others of your co-workers more and him less.

On the other hand, people may see you as thinking that a job which satisfies them is not good enough for you. They may see you thinking of them as obstacles to your ambition. They may think that you think you are better than they are, and with good reason. I tend to think so too, as you said this about them: “I work where many are complacient, and have no ambition to reach for success.” Saying that they don’t want to reach for success implies that they have not reached success already, and is basically the same as saying that they are failures. You said, “I do hold myself and family to a high standard,” implying that you think their standards are lower than yours.

If you want people to stop thinking you think you are better than they are, you need to seriously examine yourself in prayer about whether you do think so. Apparently from your posts, these aren’t the first people to feel this way about you. Trying to make people think you aren’t judging them and finding them wanting will never work unless it’s true.

To help you, here are a few thoughts:

  1. Ambition is one of the most over-rated “virtues” in US society. There is nothing wrong with wanting to get ahead, but there’s nothing wrong with NOT wanting to get ahead, either. It is holy just to do your job well and conscientiously, as long as the pay meets your family’s needs. And if you go a little slower than you could in order to be friendly with your co-workers, I’m not sure that is a sin. Doing more or faster work so that you will be rewarded with more power and money is not in itself virtuous. It isn’t sinful, either, as long as you don’t hurt other people to do it. It’s just neutral.

  2. There are people, even in the US, to whom work is not the most important part of their lives. People may have very high standards of kindness, honesty, humility, physical fitness, or whatever. You do not know what other people’s standards are. They may think different things are important than you do. Standards different from yours are not necessarily lower, just different.

  3. If you want to be promoted over the people in your office, and you want them to work so that they don’t hamper you in your ambition, and you want them to like you as well, it may not, as another poster mentioned, be possible to have it all.

  4. If you have spent time getting to know people, I think you would know if they dislike you and you could ignore what your co-worker said. If you haven’t, maybe you should.

I’m sorry if this comes across as harsh. It may easily be that you don’t do yourself justice in your posts, and really you have gotten stuck working with a lot of lazy people who are afraid you are upsetting the status quo. Alternatively, it may certainly be that the person you spoke with is just serving his own agenda and being mean to you. Or it may be that he has heard a couple of people complaining, but just in a transitory way. They may have gotten annoyed at something you did without disliking you. The person you were talking to may have accidentally or purposely exaggerated someone else’s “gee, I wish mkipp wouldn’t nag me so much” to “I don’t like mkipp,” without the speaker thinking any such thing.

I hope the situation gets resolved quickly for you. If you feel weird in the office, thinking that people don’t like you, maybe this (which is attached unobtrusively to the wall of my cube too) will help you:

Let nothing disturb you; nothing frighten you. All things are passing. God never changes. Patience obtains all things. Nothing is wanting to him who possesses God. God alone suffices. (St. Teresa of Avila) :nun1:

–Jen

P.S. Have you thought of asking your wife what she thinks of the people in your office? Since probably most or all of her information came from you, it might be a good mirror of your attitude toward them. Or of course it might not, it’s just a thought. :slight_smile:


#14

The discussion that I had was from my immediate supervisor. I think that I look at the people as just co-workers and do not treat them all as social pals. There is a clear sense of complacency and that it is okay as long as you get your work done. I put pressure on myself to work hard every day so that I can move up the corporate ladder. I need to just be nice and relatively social and just concentrate on my work and not directly comment on any other person or their work. The odd part is after the discussion, she said “you are a great worker.” I guess I just need to kill them with kindness.


#15

It looks like your supervisor was just doing a yearly evaluation on you or decided to give you helpful hints. It could be you hurt someone’s feelings and they complained about you to your supervisor about it. Your supervisor decided to let you know that your style of complaining about how other people are doing their jobs is none of your business.
You must learn not to critize sp other co-workers.

You must be irking a lot of co-workers if your supervisor had a talk with you.

I used to love to talk bad about my co-workers but my co-workers also talked bad about me. That was a terrible bad habit that I had to work on in order to survive my job.

In Office jobs… you can’t afford to offend sp anybody if you want to move up the career ladder. Think about it… You apply to an open position and your co-workers evaluating you will state you are a good worker but you like to critize sp other co-workers.
That may stop you from moving up the career ladder.

My advice is that you just need to learn not to critize sp your co-workers and that will change the attitude towards you as time passes.

You were lucky your supervisor had the guts to show you your flaws. The majority of supervisors play it safe and never say what your real flaws are in Offices.
They don’t want workers going postal on them so they play it safe.


#16

[quote="LaLucia, post:15, topic:198913"]
It looks like your supervisor was just doing a yearly evaluation on you or decided to give you helpful hints. It could be you hurt someone's feelings and they complained about you to your supervisor about it. Your supervisor decided to let you know that your style of complaining about how other people are doing their jobs is none of your business.
You must learn not to critize sp other co-workers.

You must be irking a lot of co-workers if your supervisor had a talk with you.

I used to love to talk bad about my co-workers but my co-workers also talked bad about me. That was a terrible bad habit that I had to work on in order to survive my job.

In Office jobs.... you can't afford to offend sp anybody if you want to move up the career ladder. Think about it..... You apply to an open position and your co-workers evaluating you will state you are a good worker but you like to critize sp other co-workers.
That may stop you from moving up the career ladder.

My advice is that you just need to learn not to critize sp your co-workers and that will change the attitude towards you as time passes.

You were lucky your supervisor had the guts to show you your flaws. The majority of supervisors play it safe and never say what your real flaws are in Offices.
They don't want workers going postal on them so they play it safe.

[/quote]

Very good advice :thumbsup:


#17

Being social is JUST as important as your actual job. This is something I learned early on. We have different departments at my work. At first I was shy, ate by myself, stuck to my dept. and did my job. When I made friends with others things really changed…I made life better for my direct co workers by having people from other depts contribute to mine in a real positive way.

Also, you never know who knows who. Your status quoe co-workers may be the niece or nephew of a higher up, they may leave the job and be hired for a different company and make an important contact. You want people to like you, remember you and want to help you out. Then when you’re on top you will get honest feed back and be able to run an efficient and effective company. If you ignore the social things and brown-nose you’ll be seen as the guy who stepped on all the little people on his way up.


#18

You should also learn to be part of the “grape-vine”, which means if you hang out with people from different departments you may find out that the company is closing down or being merged with another company. You may find out of a great job advancement that is coming up before it is made public.

By nice to everybody including the Mail clerks, janitors, and the little people who you may think are not important but they are.

A young gal got hired to work with another young gal not knowing that the gal was the bosses secret girlfriend. The new gal started talking bad about the boss. When she found out about the secret romance she felt very insecure and she quit her job. “cruel shoes”.

One time I talked bad about a gal worker from another department to a best friend. My friend told me they were cousins. I was shocked because they didn’t act like cousins.
My friend forgave me and we are still friends because the story was true… but still it was wrong of me.

Never talk bad about the top bosses because you will never get promoted. Bosses are looking for team players… not critical workers.

You are still young enough to learn to stay out of the OFFICE STORMS which means don’t get envovled in a co-worker’s problem with a supervisor. I once tried to help out a co-worker get her rights and I got thrown under the bus by the co-worker who turned out to be a flake.
She decided to agree with the boss. The boss never trusted me again and never gave me a promotion. I moved to another job.

God and our Angels do take care of us at work. I would end up at a better place each time I got fired or layed off eventhough it wasn’t my fault. I ended up at the best career job ever.
So don’t worry about the past mistake. Work on being a better team player.
Stay under the radar when storms show up at work. It worked for me on my last job.


#19

A young gal got hired to work with another young gal not knowing that the gal was the bosses secret girlfriend. The new gal started talking bad about the boss. When she found out about the secret romance she felt very insecure and she quit her job. “cruel shoes”.

Had to laugh! Haven’t heard this expression in years, and I love it! Thanks for bringing it back!

Unfortunately, in an office setting the “cruel shoes” scenario abounds. While it is important to be friendly, it is important to never say anything you wouldn’t want repeated or that could come back at you because you do not know what someone’s connection is. Then is would be “cruel shoes” for you.


#20

[quote="Irishmom2, post:19, topic:198913"]
While it is important to be friendly, it is important to never say anything you wouldn't want repeated or that could come back at you because you do not know what someone's connection is. Then is would be "cruel shoes" for you.

[/quote]

So true.

It is always important to be friendly in an office situation. But one needs to be very careful about who one actually considers to be a friend.


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