Like it or not, politics will always be around, and this is how things get done.
There is no way to avoid it (unless you work for yourself and never interact with anyone else professionally – which is quite rare!). If you’re not involved in the politics of business, you’re not playing the game. And if you’re not playing the game, you can’t possibly win.
Successful professionals don’t only play the game, they play it well, and they play to win!
But what is the recipe to cook up a delicious game? Any idea?
Well, here are the most important INGREDIENTS TO COOK A DELECTABLE OFFICE POLITICS RECIPE!
The Unwritten Rules For Cooking It Right!
Clearly understand the unwritten rules that your company, your industry, and your network operate by. An example of an unwritten rule might be that no business is discussed at certain company functions (they may be considered purely social). If you approach your boss’s boss to pitch a new idea at one of those functions, your idea (as great as it might be) may never be considered. Understand the unwritten rules – your chances of winning the game will go up exponentially! So that my friend, is the unwritten rule! Bring all such rules to your bowl and mix them well in your recipe! Cook them well to make a great dish!
Outstanding Negotiation Skills For That Punch!
Approach the political business situations as you would any negotiation. Do your homework and think through what you need, what the other person needs, what you have to offer, and how you can facilitate a win-win outcome. A good dash of negotiation skills will bring that desired punch to your dish! Just remember to go in for the right quantity of negotiation! Do not over-do, do not under-do! Taste matters here!
The “Quid Pro Quo” For Added Zing!
Consistently deliver value for those you work with, and keep in mind that the quid pro quo of office politics is something in exchange for something else. Don’t settle for always being on the “giving” end of that relationship – think about what you want in exchange and cash in your chips when it makes sense to do so. This skill will help you equalize your gains and giveaways! A balanced dish is what is remembered. Add the zing to make it a memorable dish and a term thereof.
The Garnish: A Sturdy Mentor
Now is the time to garnish your dish. Seek out someone at your company or in your industry who knows the ropes and is willing to help you hone your political business acumen. Ask lots of questions, study their methods, and model your approach after theirs. And in keeping with quid pro quo, be sure to return the favour! The cherry on the top is your mentor!
Serve It Well By Staying In The Game
Don’t avoid politically charged situations. Use them as opportunities to fine-tune your political savvy. Even if it feels uncomfortable to you at first, remind yourself that when you are actively involved in creating the solution, it will generally reflect more of what you want. When you stand on the sidelines and refuse to get in the game, you miss your chance to influence the outcome. To serve a great dish, you have to present on the table. Remember? So, instead of being the guest, be the host to the game, and serve your cooked recipe to each one.
Here is your perfect recipe for a luscious political office game. Cook it well, serve it well, and eat it well too!