There will always be coworkers who would use every opportunity to outshine their peers in every work environment. Even if they have coworkers who manage to outshine them, these competitive employees will not see this as a positive thing and a threat to their position.
It can be effortless to spot a competitive coworker because they will be the ones who tend to overwork, behave like they are the best in the team and even take credit for another person’s work. But, it can be tricky to manage them if you do not know where to start.
Fortunately, there are some great ways on how you can do it well and here are some below:
1. Be Direct
If you can speak to them directly, don’t hesitate to tell them that their behaviour affects everyone’s morale and the office in general. Let them know what you feel each time they compete against you instead of accusing them of inciting problems.
By being honest, you will be able to speak to them about improving your relationship with them and help them if there is a motive behind their competitiveness.
2. Learn What Their Motives Are
Some competitive workers may act like they are for a reason, which requires them to do their best to achieve their goals. It could be because they want to help their family, feel threatened by your work, or feel the stress of getting promoted.
Whatever their motives are, you will be able to deal with them more quickly if you are aware of it and offer them your assistance if they need it.
3. Foster Strong Working Relationships
If you have a competitive coworker creating a hostile work environment, why not reach out to your other coworkers and build a strong work relationship with them?
Having strong working relationships can help you work and even inspire your competitive coworker to be more friendly. If they become more sociable, don’t hesitate to include them in the group because it will allow you all to create a healthy workplace.
4. Maintain Your Integrity
Do your best to control the things you can control while working. This means that you don’t need to force your coworkers to change, and you have to focus on how you should act in the workplace.
Don’t engage with your competitive coworker, and if they do reach out to you, be polite and keep your work details to yourself to prevent them from challenging you.
5. Work With Them
Competitive coworkers may be insecure leading them to feel threatened by your success. Try to show this person that you want to work with them, not against them.
Collaborate with them, but make sure to leave a paper, or carbon copy, trail indicating that you worked on projects. You don’t want him/her to take the credit for your ideas or killer presentation.
In the meantime, focus on yourself and doing the best job you can do in the workplace. Don’t be derailed by their competitive nature and don’t try to engage in it.
If most of the people in your company are aggressive, consider if this is the type of environment where you will work best. Some people thrive in competitive environments and others don’t.
6. Speak To Your Manager
If you feel the strain of dealing with a competitive coworker, don’t hesitate to speak to your manager about it. You can let them know what you are feeling and seek their advice on what you can do to reduce the stress.
Remember, your managers are there to help you with your work, and they can deal with your troublesome coworker if they are causing trouble for the entire team.
Dealing with a competitive coworker can be a challenge. But, if you take a step back, look into what is around you to alleviate the situation and consider their position, you may find ways -like the ones listed above – to deal with them without further stress.