The Key to Overcoming Tension Among a Coworker

You probably spend at least 40 hours per week with your colleagues. If you like them and get along well, this is great but, unfortunately, it doesn’t always work that way.

Right now, you’re not getting along with one of your co-workers. The friction is impacting your work and making you feel uncomfortable in the office.

Things can’t continue this way, so you’re committed to finding a successful resolution. The key to this is understanding your role in the problem and working to make positive changes.

Here’s some advice to help the two of you learn to work together successfully.

Five Tips to Overcome Tension With a Co-Worker

Invite Them to Talk Privately

Clearly, you need to hash things out with your colleague, but the manner in which you do so matters. Approaching them in front of a group will only make them defensive, so take them aside for a private conversation. This will allow the two of you to speak freely, without the influence of others weighing in.

Listen While They Speak

You know why you’re upset with your co-worker, but there are two sides to every story. Show them you’re sincere in your desire to patch things up by giving them the floor and really listening to what they have to say. Allowing them to speak without interruption is a sign of respect that won’t go unnoticed.

Engage in Self-Reflection

When your colleague shares their feelings, really listen to what they have to say. Chances are, you’re inadvertently doing something that contributes to the problem. It can be hard to admit your faults, but doing so will make you a better person. Committing to change will help you grow and improve your relationship with your co-worker.

Try to Find Common Ground

Working with people who have personalities that differ from your own requires to give and take. If you can’t completely agree on a resolution, meet in the middle. This shows you’re both willing to step out of your comfort zone for the sake of creating a better working relationship. Taking this step should improve matters and allow the two of you to gain a deeper respect for one another.

Talk to Your Boss

If the two of you try to work things out and can’t, ask your manager to assist. Sometimes it takes a neutral third-party to step in and help sort things out. Be willing to work with your boss to find a solution that pleases both of you, because a refusal to budge will make you look bad and could ultimately cost you your job.

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