Jealousy at the workplace can be one of the most serious and negative workplace attitudes.
It creeps so fast and quick that it affects the core and very foundation of every organization and workplace for that matter.
There is relatively little that can be done about jealousy because most of them are attitudinal and an effect of our upbringing which has become part of us. It is not built over night, it develops with time. We can be in self-denial all time but our actions and inactions will always give us up. Our behaviour and utterances will really portray who we indeed are. Again societal pressure and influence can create a jealous society. Organizations can however use these tips below to minimize jealousy at the workplace.
1. Never tell your co-workers that they are “just jealous of you”
It’s true your co-worker is jealous, but saying it out loud to them ultimately undermines your case for being a likable person around the office and it won’t help matters for you.
2. Try to do some damage control
Jealous colleagues will try to set you up in order to take you down, even if it’s through harsh comments or backstabbing remarks. If these co-workers try to imply (wrongly) that you’re lazy or incompetent with your work, then do the opposite by bringing out your best performance. If they spread the word that you are stuck up, then make a special effort to take an interest in others without going overboard. Even if it is just a smile; the idea is to diffuse any perception being spread about you as someone who doesn’t deserve to be where you are professionally.
3. Find an ally if you can
Chances are a few of your colleagues aren’t buying what the jealous co-workers are saying about you. You may already have a few friends or an employee in another department who has also experienced what you are going through. Experts advise that it’s preferable to find an ally with a high position in the company to quietly show jealous colleagues that you have friends in ‘higher places’. If you no longer have any allies on the job, then you should consider exploring the job market. It may be smart to start expanding your professional network in case your situation becomes unbearable.
4. Think about things from a jealous co-worker’s perspective
It’s important to look in the mirror and imagine how a jealous co-worker might perceive you. It doesn’t mean you have to change, but this step can help in your response to those colleagues. This step requires assessing your workplace personality and going over conversations you’ve had with co-workers. Have you bragged too much about your personal and professional accomplishments, or ever come across as narcissistic? Is there something you might have said, or done, to set co-workers off? And how might you make amends if you would like to do so?
5. Have a sense of humor
Seeking out the lighter side at the workplace can save your sanity on the job. It doesn’t mean joking in front of jealous colleagues (which could very well backfire on you) – rather, imagine ways to mentally insert a laugh when necessary throughout the work day.
6. Document it / Have evidence
On a serious note, it may be advisable in some cases to take notes on the most serious workplace manifestations of co-worker jealously that might be impeding your job progress. It’s one thing not to be invited to join a group of jealous colleagues; it’s quite another to be actively sabotaged or undercut on a project out of pure jealously and envy.
7. Always remember that you’re a good person
Workplace jealously can start to take a toll on your self-esteem no matter how strong you are. Jealous colleagues can make you question yourself, underrate your skills, and make you debate in your own head whether you’ve truly earned all of your accomplishments. You don’t need to start this debate with yourself; Hold your head high, be kind to yourself, and focus on your work.