The drive to succeed, especially early in your tenure, can cloud your thoughts and actions. This can make it very difficult to hold on to your integrity in certain situations. It can also lead to a strong desire to be completely accepted by your peers at work. But be careful because next thing you know, you may be involved in office politics without even realizing it!

Not only are office politics not productive and can be morally draining, it can also cause some serious damage to your career! It is important to learn how to avoid getting sucked into the drama. One of the most valuable skills you can posses is the ability to steer clear of work politics and gossip. This is an invaluable tool!

Cliques are not exclusive to middle and high school like you see in the movies. Unfortunately, they also exist in the workplace. These groups can have a negative effect on work culture or morale. The best way to rise above and break away from the pack is to foster relationships with a variety of people in your office. Everyone has something unique to offer so make sure you don’t just isolate yourself to the same few coworkers.

Jealousy or resentment is one of the most common work distractions. It is very easy to become hurt when others are being asked to handle high profile projects or tag along on lunch outings and you are not. What may be even harder to ignore is when someone new or less productive is promoted. Competition is human nature, but it takes a strong person to realize that life isn’t always fair and that in the end, those with integrity will be recognized. Being able to have thick skin and stay focused on your personal goals while being supportive of your coworkers will get you far!

Building relationships both within and outside of your company is a great way to develop leadership skills. Gain experiences outside of work through volunteering in the community or joining professional groups. Foster authentic and honest relationships with many different people regardless of their ability to help you. Others will see your ability to connect with a variety of people in the office and before you know it, people will be doing the same thing!

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