Fresh look – Competitors in the shadows

All of us know that our peer/coworker relationships are mixed-motive, i.e., there is an equal tendency to be cooperative and competitive. While organizational leaders emphasize teamwork and cooperation, employees realize that their colleagues compete over limited opportunities for promotion, status,…

Paltering

Research on the subject of deception has distinguished lying by commission from lying by omission. The former refers to the use of false statement (e.g., agreeing with the boss when one clearly does not) while the latter involves misleading by…

When Machiavellians work for one another

Some of you may have worked for Machiavellians and experienced how your peers interact with them. If one of your peers is also manipulative, what is likely to ensue? Results from a new study indicate that sparks will fly. Machiavellians…

Machiavellians make horrible peers.

People with a Machiavellian personality use a duplicitous and manipulative interpersonal approach and focus on self-interest and personal gain. They rarely play office politics fairly, and in spite of their moral shortcomings, rise to leadership positions and enjoy considerable career…

Emails and politics

All of us are sick of hearing about “those damn emails,” but it is important that we don’t lose sight of one important fact—emails are horrible means of communication. Email messages lack gesture, voice, expression, and context, so they lack…

Effective apologies

If you violate the trust of another, an apology is called for. If it is minor, a simple “I’m sorry” will probably do, but for more significant transgressions, a full-fledged apology is called for. What are the elements of an…

If you’re a leader, make fun of yourself

That’s right, using self-deprecating humor is a great way of signaling that you are an excellent leader.[1] Making benign jokes and humorous comments about your own deficits and faults not only builds good relations with followers[2], but it is associated…

Okay, you violated trust, now what?

Most organizational relationships begin with high trust; however, it is almost inevitable that trust will be violated at some point. If you are responsible, the research evidence is clear that a quick response is necessary, and the best way to…

Hot and steamy

Physical intimacy in the workplace is much more common than I would have thought. In one study of 221 employees of different nationalities, 60% admitted to an intimate experience in the workplace.[1] My goodness. Think of the politics involved. For…

Manipulative tactics to watch out for.

Trust is the building block of modern work organizations. Trust means increasing one’s vulnerability to a person not under one’s own control.[1] When trust fails, relationships are characterized by skepticism, caution, and the expectation that the other person could resort…