How to Deal with a Bitchy Coworker
A new study from Baylor University found that a rude coworker can not only make your 9-to-5 hellish—it also screws with your personal life, too. Not cool. Here's how to shut down a mean girl on the job, fast
The bitchy move: She trashes your idea in front of your boss.
Your response: Say, "I thought about that, but then I realized..." and calmly defend your suggestion. Then move on.
Why it works: She'll know you're not a pushover, and your boss will be impressed that you stood your ground without getting catty.
The bitchy move: She constantly says things like "Wow, you look so tired today" or "Are you feeling sick?"
Your response: Tell her, "Oh, well I feel great. I got up early to go for a run/get ahead of deadline/take a yoga class/etc."
Why it works:It gets across two things: 1) You don't give a crap what she thinks about how you look, and 2) You're way more busy and accomplished than she is (even if all you really did was stay in bed and hit snooze).
The bitchy move: She doesn't pull her weight on a joint project and expects you to do everything.
Your response: Say this, "Listen, I know you're swamped, but let's come up with a plan to divide things evenly, otherwise we'll both look bad."
Why it works: If you flat out tell her that you think you're doing everything, she'll get defensive. This way, she'll get the message without shutting down on you. But if she still flakes, send your boss an email once the project is complete. Tell her how much you enjoyed working on the project, especially [insert all of the things you did on your own], and you'd love to do similar assignments in the future. Your boss will be able to read between the lines.
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The bitchy move: She invites everyone to an office happy hour...except you.
Your response: Email a coworker you're friendly with, and say you heard that everyone's hanging out after work and you'd love to join.
Why it works: You'll connect with your other colleagues, so they'll extend the invite to you next time. And while you're being charming and fabulous and having a blast with everyone else, she'll see that her scheme was NBD for you.
The bitchy move: She takes credit for your idea in a meeting.
Your response: Jump in the conversation and point out a way to make it even better.
Why it works: If you called her out, your boss would think you're whiny. With this approach you come across a team player...plus you get the satisfaction of one-upping her.
Source: Alexandra Levit, career expert and author of New Job, New You: A Guide to Reinventing Yourself in a Bright New Career.
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