At some point in your rising career, you will encounter corporate politics. It doesn’t matter what size the company is – it may be a family owned business or small company, the signs are the same.
How you find out may be through careful observation or perhaps experience when you find yourself in the middle of a mess. The better you prepare yourself for recognizing the signs before you get caught up in the situation, the easier it will be for you to figure out a way through it.
Here are some signs that tell you corporate politics is alive at your workplace:
- You are surprised at decisions being made without your consultation.
- You are not being included in communication (email or meetings) in pre-planning stages.
- After a decision is made, subsequent meetings are held to vet out concerns and you are not invited.
- Peers withhold information or resources that affect your effectiveness and success.
- Communication with peers is not balanced. You hear more negative comments than positive encouragement.
- You see a noticeable decline in meeting requests with your staff, peers or boss.
There are many more subtle and obvious signs of corporate politics. The signs I identified are the ones that become visible at first. If not addressed quickly, the organization, your peers, staff and boss will lose confidence in your ability to lead with strength.
Corporate politics essentially are power plays at work.
The way you handle the corporate politics will set a tone for everyone in the organization on how you want to be treated. It is important to not overplay your hand with emotion and not seem wimpy at the same time by letting things continue. It’s a delicate balance.