Battling Office Politics

opinion Essay
994 words
994 words

Office politics can have advantages that may motivate certain employees and cliques. It can be very productive, as they usually know each other well and can utilize each person’s talent in a team setting. How a supervisor or manger deals with office politics can ultimately lead to his or her success or demise. It can also be the most unproductive and destructive problem in the workplace; which can derail the best laid business plans. It can eventually take down what was once a profitable smooth running business if it is allowed to continue or if upper management is a participant.
Small business owners and management at every level of any company should always be aware and listen closely to what is being said by their employees or associates. An action that undermines or impedes a co-worker’s right to do his or her job is another practice used in office politics to cause problems. It is good for employees to form bonds and friendships, but when cliques are formed in the office and others are bullied or cold shouldered, major complications can occur. Some of these problems can even lead to situations of workplace violence. The following are some of the signs and downfalls of office politics and ways to address situations before they get out of control.

Recognizing Cliques and Office Politics
I have seen office politics at its best, and more often at its worst. After being in the workforce for thirty-six years, from entry level to middle management, I have learned this; no matter what business you are in, if you have more than 3 people, you have an atmosphere for office politics. Two get friendly and one is out in the cold. Before you know it, your business is under attack from within; therefore, being very aware can put you on...

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...e bullying as a serious issue, just as schools do, it will continue to be a costly and sometimes deadly fact of everyone’s daily lives. Using another’s back might get you there, but it can be a slippery slope. “To learn and apply is to raise ones skills; one is upgrading oneself. Learning, self-cultivation and self-improvement is important in the workplace and in doing business.” (Patrick Low, K., & Mohd. Zain, A., 2012)

Works Cited

Management Today, 2013, (5), pg. 14
Bower, P. (2005). 12 MOST COMMON THREATS TO SALES AND OPERATIONS PLANNING PROCESS. Journal Of Business Forecasting, 24(3), 4-14
Patrick Low, K., & Mohd. Zain, A. (2012). Confucius' teachings, good leadership and getting on top of office politics. Educational Research (2141-5161), 3(9), 698-705.
United States Department of Labor, Workplace Violence, 2013,

In this essay, the author

  • Explains that they've seen office politics at its best, and more often at it's worst, after being in the workforce for 36 years, from entry level to middle management.
  • Advises that if you have set rules and guidelines, make sure everyone at every level knows them. watch for supervisors or managers using preferential treatment when enforcing rules, other employees will notice.
  • Opines that putting people together and having them air out their grievances in front of each other can help put backbiting to a stop.
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