Self-Assessment Quiz – True or False:

  • I am aware of my professional worth.
  • I am observant of my co-workers and our interactions.
  • I am consistently documenting my “Job Well Done” and “Do Better Next Time” milestones.
  • I am transparent with how I work.

I’ve said it once, and I’ll say it again: You’re going to have haters at work. Last week, we talked about how to deal with these lovely types of folks by understanding their underlying motives. This week I want to do a deeper dive into the benefits of having haters in your life.

Say what now?!

If you answered TRUE to the questions above, then you clearly have a sense of yourself as a valued employee. But when a situation goes bad (e.g., your hater is stealing your ideas, talking behind your back, realigning your budgets and other resources, not including you in meetings, reducing your visibility with other senior leaders, or not sharing pertinent information with you), you must recognize that no matter how it’s being sugarcoated, you are indeed under attack. You must take action.  You have three options:

  1. You can speak up for yourself to your superiors and co-workers to prove the hater wrong. Be sure you’ve documented every assault. List out the meetings you were invited to before the hater took over the invitations and suddenly you’re persona non gratis on the list. In writing, ask why projects you’d gotten awards for previously were suddenly being delegated to a person with fewer years of experience. Remove any emotion from the documentation and let the facts speak for themselves. No drama necessary, but it just may help people see you in a different, stronger light.
  2. You can work harder if, in fact, you do need to step up your game to shut the hater down. Prove why you deserve to be in that meeting. If a project could have been handled differently had you had that missing information, don’t be afraid to share what the true “after” could have looked like had you had it. If your ideas are being flaunted as someone else’s, speak up! Show the work trail from concept through completion. Turn your work in early. Be proactive in finding solutions. Make “I Can Do That” your anthem that everyone knows you proudly sing all hours of the day. Anytime you get in front of your superiors, shine, shine, and SHINE some more! Make them ask why they aren’t seeing more of you. Working hard usually gets people noticed in a good way.
  3. You can recognize this hater situation for what it is: a gift from the universe to get the hell outta Dodge! Don’t ever be afraid to jump ship. Yes! It is an option. Sometimes when life throws us a curve ball, we want to rant and rave about it. Because we’re comfortable in this hellhole. It is, after all, our hellhole, which is a lot less scary than the unknown hellholes out there. Or even the nirvana opportunities. That’s the thing about being stuck and rooted in fear—you don’t know if you can find a better job with nicer people, making more money, doing what you love because you’re too comfortable in that fear to even peek over your cubicle to see what else exists for you beyond your limited view.

Honey, listen to me. I told you in the first post of this year that a successful career is contingent on your mindset. If things have gotten to the point where you dread going to work because of a hater, then it’s time to reframe the hater. I suggest you rename him or her “Angel” and start thanking the universe for the blessed day this backstabbing, idea-grabbing, non-truth telling, smiling-in-your-face-but-mean-you-no-good person entered your life!

Because this Angel may be just the push you needed outta this nest to get to your next level of success. Take your ball and bat, and go be a superstar someplace else.

There you go, three benefits you gotta love that come from dealing with a hater. Yes, the benefits may have snuck up on you.  I suggest, however, that you try one or all three out for size. But you gotta do SOMETHING to change your situation.  Now stop sneaking around corners, walking on eggshells and pulling knives out of your back and go beat these haters at their own game.  Let me know what happens. (But I know you’re  going to be fine!)

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