Plagued by a Poor Attitude?


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If you’re channeling Robert De Niro’s defiant dialogue in the iconic “Taxi Driver” in the way you treat co-workers and handle projects, chances are you’ve got an attitude problem.

But maybe it’s not that blatant. What if you’re blissfully unaware of how you’re coming across?

This U.S. News & World Report article lays out several scenarios. Among them:

You’re grumpy. A lot. Everyone has occasional frustrations at work, but if your job and everyone around you regularly irritate you, and you’re not shy about letting people know it, people are going to dread working with you. If your frustrations impact you to the point that everyone knows about them, it’s probably time to decide whether you can find a way to be reasonably happy at work or whether it’s time to move on. Otherwise, you’ll do serious harm to your reputation and ultimately could even lose your job.

You never want to hear that you could have done something differently or better. If you get defensive when you get feedback on your work, you could be doing yourself serious harm. It’s tough to give feedback to a defensive person, and many people will simply stop trying. That means that you won’t get information that you need to grow professionally, which can significantly limit your prospects and your long-term success. Plus, people who do stick it out and keep giving you feedback anyway are likely to resent that you make it so unpleasant to do it.

You’re preoccupied with “what’s in it for you.” It’s reasonable to expect that over time, good work should pay off – with better assignments, raises and career advancement. But the key words there are “over time.” It’s not reasonable to expect special rewards every time you’re asked to go even slightly outside your routine responsibilities. Doing that is just part of being on a team (within reason, of course).

One pointer provoked a gasp: Don’t roll your eyes during meetings or have other visibly negative facial expressions. That’s beyond exhibiting a bad attitude – it’s insolence, plain and simple.

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