It should go without saying that workplace “popularity contests” are immature and ultimately not relevant to a productive and efficient office environment. However, because we’re all human beings, we’re likely to run into challenges and difficulties if we work alongside colleagues who don’t enjoy our company (either professionally or personally). If you’re worried that your coworkers don’t like working with you, keep an eye out for these 8 telltale signs.
1. Coworkers never drop by your desk to chat.
This one depends heavily on your office culture; in certain workplaces, employees don’t socialize in the flow of the work day. But if your colleagues do regularly stop by each others’ cubicles to exchange a few words about the weather or last night’s NFL game, but no one ever attempts to engage you in small talk, that could indicate a level of discomfort.
2. They show zero interest in your personal life.
Again, some offices allow for more work-life/personal-life overlap than others. But even in a less-than-social workplace, it’s often a red flag to have coworkers who never ask how you’re doing or how your weekend went, even in the most perfunctory of terms.
3. They go out of their way to shoot down your ideas.
When you sit down with your team for a brainstorming meeting, do your colleagues tend to interrupt you, argue with your every point, or otherwise undermine your input? If the answer is “yes”, then there’s a good chance that they’re not your biggest fans.
4. They try to take credit for your ideas.
On the flip side, if your colleagues don’t credit you for your own ideas and instead try to present your thoughts to your supervisor as though the ideas belong to them, that also suggests a grievous lack of esteem for you on the part of your coworkers.
5. You’re picking up on negative body language and facial expressions.
Even if your officemates manage to keep their words in check, their negative attitudes can clearly appear in their body language and facial expressions. Look for a lack of eye contact, a failure to smile in your presence, and bodies angled away from you during conversations and meetings.
6. Colleagues always communicate with you via email, even when that isn’t the most logical choice.
Email correspondence is an increasingly-valid form of intra-office communication...but if you’re one desk over from your colleague and she still decides to email or IM you to ask a speedy “yes or no” question rather than speaking to you directly, that could be a sign of poor relations between you.
7. Your work-related needs aren’t given high priority.
In an ideal world, all professionals would handle work-related matters in order of precedence, regardless of their personal opinions about the person making the request for assistance. In reality, however, colleagues who don’t care for you may take their time before getting to your projects, since they’re less concerned about your professional reputation.
8. They drop hints suggesting that you should seek employment elsewhere.
There are plenty of totally innocuous reasons to mention an out-of-company position to a colleague; if you know that your work pal is being underpaid and you notice a posting for a role that she’d excel in that’s paying a more competitive salary, it makes complete sense to give her a heads-up. But if you’re noticing a pattern of your colleagues urging you to consider roles outside of the company (without your encouragement or clear interest), that could be their (not-so-subtle) way of trying to get rid of you.