Whether its a moody boss
or a colleague
sharing interminable stories about his toddler, dealing with
certain types of co-workers can have a deadly effect on your
productivity, according to Morrie Shechtman, author of Fifth Wave
Leadership: The Internal Frontier (Facts on Demand Press, www.fifthwaveleadership.com
). “When you think of
people who drain you, chances are you think of people who are very
intense,” says Shechtman. “Not true. Some drainers are extremely
boring. A drainer is anyone who consistently takes your energy away
from the tasks at hand.”
Sound achingly familiar? If so, Shechtman offers the following
" Know the enemy.
Beware people who talk at
you rather than with you. Likewise, be wary of a co-worker whose
very presence makes you feel anxious or puts you to sleep.
" Set boundaries.
Act assertively by
confronting the problem. Shechtman says this could involve telling
a “baby blatherer” that you do not have enough time at work to
listen to his stories, or telling a “bullying boss” that you can no
longer be an audience to her rantings. “Most likely you will gain
the respect of the drainer, and she will back down,” says
" Cut them off.
Interrupt drainers by saying
what you are experiencing at that moment. Tell a screeching boss,
for example, “I’m having a problem following what you are saying to
me. Please be clear. I would really like to know what it is that
you need from me right at this moment.”
“If you’ve noticed a problem,” adds Shechtman, “chances are
everyone else has, too. By bringing it to the person’s attention,
you might compel him to work on it. You are actually doing him a