If you work with a snippy, rude, or disrespectful person, he or she may be negatively impacting your personal life in more ways than you might think, according to a new study from Baylor University in the US announced last week.
In a study involving 190 full-time workers and their partners, findings revealed that rude coworkers can trigger a host of problems for their colleagues, including stress, negative emotions, and feelings of ostracism that lead to family and marital issues, and even work stress for the partner of the colleague.
"One approach to prevent this stress might be to encourage workers to seek support through their organization's employee assistance program or other resources such as counseling or stress management," suggested Merideth Ferguson, assistant professor at the Baylor University Hankamer School of Business and study author.
When it comes to dealing with rude coworkers, CNN suggests being objective to make sure you are not the one overreacting. Also consult a trusted colleague to get a second opinion and to help put your thoughts into perspective.
In a CNN interview, Scott Eblin, author of The Next Level: What Insiders Know About Executive Success also suggests a good strategy is "to kill them with kindness."
"When they're rude to you, be polite to them," he said. "Your behavior may influence theirs in a positive way."
While rude coworkers may possibly wreak havoc on your life, according to research, friendly and supportive workmates can extend it. In a previous study from Tel Aviv University in Israel, results showed that having friendly colleagues was associated with a reduced risk of death from any cause over a 20-year period.
To build camaraderie with your colleagues, Readers Digest magazine suggests that you can start by saying a cheery hello in the morning rather than skulking to your desk with your head down. Also, don't be afraid to engage in small talk, join office team sports, and ask others' opinions regarding work projects.