Dealing with difficult people in the workplace sometimes requires the intervention of your boss or supervisor. This is especially true when it comes to coworkers who show you a lack of respect. It might seem difficult to talk to your boss or supervisor about the issue, but communication is key in conflict resolution. Knowing how to talk to your boss about a co-worker who doesn't respect you gives you the ability to resolve your workplace problems.
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Find a safe and neutral place to discuss the conflict. Employee common areas and conference rooms are useful for getting your boss' attention for a discussion of this nature.
Identify an appropriate time to discuss a topic at length. It isn't respectful to your boss or coworkers when you take up time during a busy part of the day. Request some of your boss' time by explaining that it's an issue pertaining to a conflict between you and a co-worker. Your boss might want to know about the issue then, or he could schedule an appointment for a discussion.
Assert your problems with your boss maturely and distinctly. Do not take on too much of a victim's attitude because this can rub off the wrong way with an employer. If necessary, your boss might request that your co-worker be present during the discussion or after.
Listen to your co-worker's side of the story without interrupting or overreacting. Your boss needs to hear both sides of the story to make a decision on a resolution between you and your co-worker.
Write down a list of the things your co-worker has done to make you feel disrespected. Use this list to address your boss while discussing the issue.
Address the disrespect with your boss without being accusatory. For example, say that you "feel" disrespected and you "feel" like your co-worker is being malicious. Do not flat out say "he disrespected me." An accusatory stance could put a damper on your discussion.
Agree to reach a resolution that is reasonable with your boss and the co-worker who has disrespected you. Conflict resolution takes compromise, especially when you have to work with the person who is being disrespectful.
Tips and warnings
- Re-evaluate your feelings before pursuing a conversation with your boss. Sometimes you can take things personally and taking a day or two to mull it over will give you the needed insight to decide whether it is necessary to take the problem to your supervisor.
- Contact police upon notifying your supervisor if disrespectful behaviour becomes menacing or criminal.
- Don't overcomplain. Making too many complaints about your coworkers' behaviour makes you look bad in the end. If you find that you're having recurring issues with more than one co-worker, step outside the situation and consider other methods for handling yourself in office situations.
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