5 Bad Office Behaviors That May Be Holding You Back

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From grade school to adulthood, in any social situation, you have to play nicely with others to forge relationships that get you ahead.

Unless you’re working in an office alone, you must recognize different interoffice personality types and learn how to get along with a variety of levels within an organization.  Some businesses require all employees take personality assessments so they can learn how to communicate with everyone, but if yours doesn’t, make sure you correct any of the five bad office behaviors below that may be holding you back from being promoted or recognized for your hard work.

Nothing says you’re not a team player like talking about your fellow team members behind their backs. Even if your boss never directly hears anything you say, you never know what could be getting back to him – or what he’s observed about you. Gossip just doesn’t belong in the office; it erodes the foundation you should be building on and undermines others’ confidence.

Expressing negativity
Speaking negatively about your job or the state of the business has serious consequences. First, one person’s negativity may cause self-doubt in others, so what began as one negative thought becomes hundreds of negative thoughts. Second, it causes distrust between employees and supervisors – and between colleagues. Third, it halts progress, as no one wants to speak up about a great idea when it’s going to be met with negativity.

Fearing challenges
Self-help author Allan Rufus said, “Life is like a game of chess; to win, you have to make a move.” Great leaders exhibit the confidence to say they’re not afraid of learning something new or to stand up in front of others to teach them something new. The root of fear is often lack of confidence, and who wants to promote a potential leader who’s afraid to actually lead?

Acting uptight
The best coworkers roll with the punches – but moreover, understand that the punches happen in the first place. Uptight coworkers refuse to socialize with other coworkers, don’t budge on processes and aren’t flexible when deadlines are changed or situations differ from the plan. It’s okay to laugh once in awhile at work – it doesn’t mean you’ve told an inappropriate joke; it means you’re human.

Displaying selfishness
Workplace selfishness can manifest in many different ways: You might take all the credit for a team effort, refuse to follow the rules or snatch all the good work assignments so you look like the hardest worker. Let someone else shine at the office; it’s the easiest, fastest way to earn the respect of your colleagues and supervisors – and move the business ahead.