As a persuader, Burg says it’s your responsibility to defuse potentially difficult transactions by framing them in a way that’s beneficial for everyone.“The framework is the foundation from which everything else emanates,” he says.
Because, unlike with friends, you don’t get to pick your office mates.
And, unlike with family, you can’t lean on Mom to referee your arguments.To make matters even tougher, author Bob Burg says that most people aren’t skilled in the art of persuasion—a key ingredient to putting issues with colleagues to bed.And that’s precisely why he wrote his latest book, , which dishes out advice on what it takes to be an effective workplace influencer.“That means you’re someone who consistently gets the results you want from others in such a way that you’ve made them feel genuinely good about themselves, the situation—and you,” Burg explains.
But you can work toward an arrangement that satisfies both of you.
Step one is to draw in your grumpy, non-team player with a compliment, Burg says.
Your fresh-out-of-college assistant wants to skip the less glamorous, everyday tasks she was hired to do–like processing contracts–to jump into high-profile projects above her skill set.
If you want to connect with colleagues to resolve sensitive situations, Burg says you’ve got to do it skillfully–and with compassion.Burg says this conundrum is a classic example of conflicting perspectives.You may never be able to fully understand your employee’s attitude because your belief system–a combination of your upbringing, culture, and experiences–is different.Turns out that’s a lucrative skill to possess.“Because you create such positive experiences, people can’t wait to do business with you again,” he adds.“It’s much more profitable, both financially and relationship-wise, to be a master persuader rather than a master manipulator–someone who people can’t get away from fast enough.”Ready to begin your transformation into the ultimate office influencer?So before approaching your cube-mate, take a deep breath and promise yourself to keep the snarky comments at bay.Burg stresses the importance of using a friendly, nonaccusatory tone, saying something like, “Hey, Mary, I’d love to discuss something with you that might make it a bit easier to enjoy our work environment.The key to getting your coworker to nix those annoying habits hinges on your ability to stay cool.“Otherwise, you’re not in any position to talk to that person in a way that benefits you,” Burg says.I just don’t want either of us to feel bad about it if it happens again.”This way, explains Burg, you’re getting her permission and buy-in to correct the problem in the future.Over the course of time, through continued self-control and kindness, you’re reteaching Mary to do what you want: be a good office mate. The Secret to Using Criticism to Boost Your Career As a new project manager, you’ve just been assigned a team that includes a testy employee who’s notorious for picking apart everything from team-building exercises to the office snack selection.