A constantly complaining coworker can affect the office atmosphere in a very negative way. Their attitude will have an impact on the motivation and mood of everybody else.
Dealing with a negative and constantly complaining coworker is never easy or pleasant. The situation becomes even more cumbersome if the person has no legitimate complaints. We all know such people and how complicated it is to deal with them.
You can use several strategies and methods to deal with a negative coworker. You need to be patient and calm in order to understand what is going on and to take adequate measures.
The first step towards dealing with a constantly complaining coworker is showing some understanding.
Try to listen to your colleague. Get to know the person better. When you do that, you will find out whether the complaints are rational. Show understanding and the desire to be compassionate. Many people need just that.
The problem could get solved if the complaining person has someone to talk to and share with. Try to be that person.
Get to Know them Better (if you got the time)
Many employees complain and are negative because of personal problems.
Try to know this coworker better. Personal dramas, family complications, financial difficulties or other individual problems could be the reason behind the coworker’s behavior.
Be sympathetic and show some understanding. Try to suggest some solutions. If the person feels appreciated and understood, their behavior is likely to change.
If other, friendlier strategies fail to produce results, you might consider ignoring your constantly complaining coworker.
Some people complain in an attempt to attract attention to themselves. A policy of disregard will deprive them of the audience they need so badly. If they have no audience, these people will lose interest in complaining.
Ignore someone as a last resort measure. This type of treatment is unpleasant and really hard on your coworker. If the person has something legitimate to complain about, try to look for a solution.
Find a Viable Solutions
Some of the coworker’s complaints could actually be sound and very-well founded. Instead of ignoring such complaints, try to deal with the problems that caused them.
Listen to the coworker and find out whether the complaints are based on facts or created out of thin air.
If you can do something to improve the situation, you will probably win the appreciation and respect of your coworker. A change in the work environment can actually result in a change in your coworker’s behavior.
Be Honest with The Negative Coworker
Another strategy to deal with negative individuals at work is being completely honest with them.
Tell your coworker that all complaints are unfounded and that the negative attitude is affecting others, as well. When being so honest, try to break the news in a gentle and respectful manner. You will achieve nothing if you offend the person.
Some people can be difficult to deal with. If all of your efforts fail, you should probably contact human resources. Do your best to understand your negative coworker and to offer a helping hand. This might be just what is needed to deal with the situation.
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