Passive Pushover? Here's How You Can Still Win at Work
Black Enterprise Magazine September/October 2018 Issue

(Image: Thinkstock)

They say you have to teach people how to treat you. So, if you’re that passive co-worker always taking on extra work or the boss who never says no, you’ve just created a workplace monster you may never be able to tame.

Being passive in the workplace can lead to toxic office issues including conflict, burn-out, slack productivity and ineffective leadership. Brazen Careerist offers ways you can stop the nonsense and take charge of your actions, which will help in more ways than one:

Present favorable alternatives. Sometimes requests made of us seem unreasonable. Only you can determine what is unreasonable to you. Being hired for a local job and then being asked to fly overseas one week out of every month might seem unreasonable. You must let your manager know what is unreasonable for you.

Your manager is more likely to respond favorably if he or she is presented with alternatives. For example, instead of telling your manager you don’t have the skills to work on a particular project, ask if training could be made available to you.
If you’re unable to stay late or work weekends, suggest your interest in working remotely. Present alternatives to demonstrate you’re not trying to avoid work but would rather do what’s best for everyone.

Respect the time of everyone involved. Your manager doesn’t have time to listen while you figure out what to say. If possible, write down your message before entering his or her office.

For example, if they have a business requirement you don’t have the skills to fulfill, write something like, “I’m not a good fit for this project because I don’t have the skills needed to work on it. Although I am willing to learn them, right now, I don’t want to put me, you or the company in a compromising situation.” Then, use your message as the core to shape the rest of your case.

Read more at Brazen Careerist …

Join the Conversation

Janell Hazelwood

Janell Hazelwood is associate managing editor at Black Enterprise, managing content across core areas of Money, Career, Small Business and Technology. She is also a featured blogger with My Two Cents, providing insights on branding, millennial career development, employment trends and leadership. She was previously a content producer and copy editor for Black Enterprise magazine, working across several editorial sections. The Hampton University graduate got her start in the newspaper industry, having worked for companies including The New York Times and Scripps Howard News Service. Her works and insights have appeared on The Huffington Post, MadameNoire, E!Online, Brazen Careerist, CBS News, and Arise TV.


MORE ON BlackEnterprise.com