The problem is, we are not aware of the backstabbers until it is too late. At least, that’s what we want to tell our conscious self. In reality, we usually know who these people are. God let us know early in the game, as soon as we are exposed to this person, he tells, “don’t trust, her”, but we usually don’t listen. He gives us a feeling deep inside of our soul, he makes us aware of words, comments of this person, but we pretend, we didn’t get it… until it is too late.
Ladies, open your eyes and know, that everyone is not going to like you! And that is perfectly fine, not everyone like pizza or fried chicken, and that is OK. It was the hardest thing for me to understand. Very early in my career, I noticed that some people would tend to gravitate towards me and others didn’t. I didn’t understand why, and it hurt. And one day, winning about with a friend, he was a good friend, a lawyer and judge, who told me “Fay, this is not a popularity contest, leadership is about making decisions and doing what you need to do for the organization. There will be people who like you and others may not.” I learned to deal with it and had to navigate through a lot of backstabbing, and yes, I survive it all. The stories are too numerous to share, but they all taught me about people and about myself.
My Candid words to you:
At work, know your environment. Understand the people that are around you, their needs and their goals. If you do this, you can foresee, in advance, the qualities and behaviors of a backstabber. Keep your career goals to yourself. Share what is necessary and keep away from TMI (Too Much Information). People at work, don’t need to know all about your life. “Share with your eyes open.”
When you discover that someone is backstabbing other co-workers, be aware and keep your guard up. Don’t take it personal, know that if she did it to others, she will do it to you.
If you are a product of a backstabber, you have to make a decision.
“Do I confront the person” or “do I pretend not to know”
Once you make up your own mind, go to work.
If you decide to confront the person:
- Speak from your own point of view, your feelings and the results of the damage (if there was any)
- Are you ready to clean up, if you need to take responsibility for your own actions, do so.
- Brace yourself and listen to how the “backstabber” defend her actions or not.
- You may go back and forth be careful not to keep wounding yourself or the other person.
- Get to the point of an interpersonal agreement or contract.
- Try not bring it up again once the “contract” was dealt with and signed. However, keep your guard up.
- If she deny the allegations, be open to accept that she will not take responsibility.
- Are your ready to agree to disagree?
If you decide pretend not to know:
- Have a plan.
- Work on your heart and try that your attitude don’t become unproductive.
- Don’t compromise your values.
- Be clear on where you are and where you are going.
- Be watchful of your conversation with this person and her friends/connections
- Keep your work on point
- Don’t be afraid to toot your horn.
Final words. Believe or not, a backstabber may believe that she is justified. In many instances, they don’t feel that they are in fact, backstabbing. They actually find that their behavior is justifiable in some way or form. My question to you is, have you ever backstab yourself through self-doubt and self-sabotage? You can move on from others, but can you move on from yourself and still be successful? Keep your eyes on the price and believe in yourself, as you continue through your journey.
Fay A. Lawrence, MBA, ITF. She is a Leadership and HR Strategist, Author and Master Trainer. Fay has been providing human development solutions and change management for more than 20 years at the national and international level in English and Spanish. Fay works with Fortune 500 companies as well as with Non-Profits and Governmental Agencies. She is committed to be a support and guide for organizations who want to transform their culture and develop their leadership in order to be effective and relevant in today’s market. For more information, contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the website at: www.globalprofilesgroup.com