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Asked by Brea on December 13, 2014

I greatly dislike one of my coworkers. I have to work with this person daily and we've never been able to get along. I don't want to leave my job over this, so what should I do?

Answered by Ellen, Hiring Expert at Hospira, on December 15, 2014

The best advice I can offer is to try to work out the issues directly.  If that is not possible then I would pull in your HR business partner to offer suggestions and advise.  Having a third party intervention will be helpful.  HR has many tools to help employees work through issues or problems.  This often is helpful to resolve employee concerns.  Best of luck!

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Answered by Sharon, Hiring Expert at Mutual of Omaha, on December 15, 2014

At some point in everyone's career when you work with someone you don't care for. As working adults, you learn that there will be someone at the next job you don't care for too. While you can't change others, the only thing you can change is your reaction to them. Try to be the bigger person in these situation and don't engage energy into arguing, etc. Also, consider having a one on one discussion with them about your working relationship...where don't you see eye to eye and why? Consider getting your manager involved and focus on how you work through the relationship...not have your manager do it for you.

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Answered by Nell, Hiring Expert at Pitney Bowes, on December 17, 2014


Ahhh... A question as old as time. The good news is you are not alone. Many people face this same struggle at their work. With so many different personality types, deadlines and overtime; it is inevitable that personalities will clash. My advice to you is to avoid the “grass is greener” mentality. There is no guarantee that you will like everyone at another job. I have some thoughts for you on this topic:
- Surround yourself with the people that you do like. This will help you enjoy your time better at work.
- Try to find a common ground with the person that you dislike, maybe you have different views professionally but you may have a common love for a sports team or hobby. This could help build a foundation to help the working relationship.
- Avoid ever talking bad or gossiping about this person. This will create an even more toxic environment.
- Do occasional acts of kindness for this person. This can also be a bridge to a relationship that can go a long way professionally.
- Having a deeper understanding that their actions are not a reflection of you. While this is probably the hardest thing of all; especially if you completely disagree with the way the go about business. Have peace knowing that you can only control the work that you do and the products that you produce. Now the exception to all of this is that the person is being ethical and lawful, if they are not then that is the point where you exercise the proper channels at your company.
I wish you the best of luck and hope things improve!

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