Beware Of The ‘Office Jerk’ Virus

Beware Of The ‘Office Jerk’ VirusAccording to recent studies, being an office jerk is highly contagious. I’m not kidding.

‘Obnoxious behavior’

A troublesome and uber-bossy boss can make work life miserable for his or her subordinates, but a new research shows that those subjected to obnoxious behavior in the office are more likely to act rude themselves, thereby influencing others to do the same.

Take this situation, for example: Worker A gets bullied by his boss so he complains to Worker B, who in in turn, spreads the word to the Worker C beside him that Worker A is being bullied by the boss. Worker D overhears this conversation and drops all sorts of negative comments about a boss an another person, Worker E. Worker D hears these comments and reports everything back to the Boss. This stirs up negative energy among office workers. And the chain of rude acts goes on.

WebMD cites a new research from University of New Hampshire organizational behavior professor Paul Harvey which shows that office jerks can actually influence others to be jerks themselves.

‘Zero tolerance’

“Abusive bosses not only cause misery for the employees they target, but they also poison the work environment for the victims’ co-workers,” reports the article. How? The researchers write: “Employees realize that the organization is allowing this negative treatment to exist, even if they are not experiencing it directly.”

How can we fight this nasty “Office Jerk” virus? Well, lucky for us, there is a surefire cure for this. If you yourself are guilty of engaging in Office Jerk activities, put an end to it. Immediately. I mean right now. No delays. You might have been a jerk to only one person, but what you don’t see is that you’ve done more harm than what meets the eye.

I believe every work setting should implement a zero tolerance policy for the Office Jerk Virus. This policy should help cement your working relationship and help foster a more productive working environment for both bosses and subordinates.

Have you been affected by the Office Jerk Virus lately? How did you counter this nasty problem? Feel free to share your experiences with us!

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Things That Make Your Officemates Dislike You

Your co-workers are judging you. Beneath a veneer of professional collegiality, they’re taking note of the mess on your desk, how loudly you chew, even your word choices. To avoid negative judgments from your co-workers, experts advise avoiding the following behaviors:

Sucking up to the boss 

The boss’s pet who ingratiates himself at the expense of his co-workers incites negative judgments, said Meredith Haberfeld, a New York-based executive and career coach. Trying to take work from your colleagues, or take too much credit, are also bad moves.

Negativity 

The occasional bit of gossip can relieve stress. Too much can make you look bad. According to a 2011 Monster.com survey, respondents reported that among their co-workers’ impolite behaviors, gossiping “ticked them off,” along with texting during meetings, being too loud and leaving a mess. Employees also are judged when they interrupt colleagues, or ignore or discount others’ ideas. Complaining about “inappropriate” behavior that is, at worst, slightly off is also a problem.


Messiness

Messiness, particularly in communal areas and shared workspaces, can breed negative judgments. According to a recent survey from staffing and consulting firm Adecco, a majority of respondents said people are most productive when their workspace is clean, though some view messiness as a sign of being busy, and others see it as an indication of laziness.

Poor cubicle etiquette

In offices with few doors and lots of cubicles, etiquette with regard to odors and noise is important. But a loud talker may be the top offender.

Not fitting in

It’s important to fit into an office’s culture. That can include how you dress, and what you say. There’s also a code of conduct for email. “Maybe someone is overly brusque, or is always putting urgent or cc’ing everything,”  Charles Purdy, senior editor at jobs site Monster.com, said. “Bcc is almost always a dangerous idea. Transparency is important—it prevents you from seeming sneaky. If you are bcc’ing someone to get someone else in trouble, you are being the office jerk.”

What are other factors that make you dislike a co-worker? Share your thoughts and experiences with us!

Source: Yahoo News

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