Handling jealousy at work

Jealous co workers can be a constant source of worry at workplace. It’s important to do some damage control well in advance.

Your success at work will not be a cause for celebration for others. Success breeds success and sadly jealousy. As you make friends in your firm, you also create enemies – directly or indirectly. Your foes will make an effort to downgrade your efforts / accomplishments on every possible occasion. They can hinder your progress and even set traps to pull you down.

Jealous co workers are easily identifiable the more obvious ones will try to outdo you in every possible endeavor, whereas the more subtle ones will wait for the right time to malign your reputation.

Here are two ways to tackle jealous coworkers

1) Defuse their jealousy
2) Counter their efforts.

Question yourself

Ask yourself whether you have funneled their feelings or not; have you done something to ignite jealous feelings? Have you belittled others or bragged about your success?

Mend your ways

If you find some negative traits in yourself try and change them. Always be polite humble and show warmth towards others. Boost the self esteem and confidence of your co workers by sharing your success and experiences.

Make sincere change

In case you have been arrogant in the past, apologize and show a change of heart. However, don’t show that you fear jealousy from colleagues but make a sincere change instead.

Win respect from peers

Sometimes people perceive you as a mercenary / sycophant, who crave for personal gain. Show consideration for your team members. In most cases, they will start leaning towards you, thus isolating your detractors. You may be left with only two critics who may change over a period of time.

Pre-empt jealousy

You can get feelers from your colleagues / team members that they are beginning to dislike you. Once you foresee something like this get into action. Share credit where it is due and sometimes, even when it is not. Be humble and don’t lose your respect. Nip their feelings in the bud before it becomes a full blown affair.

Congratulate others

Take time and shoe appreciation towards your peers’ efforts. Try not to be jealous yourself.

However in some occasions trying to soothe jealous feelings may not work. In such a situation you have to fight for yourself. The idea is to the damage control in advance as you don’t want to be caught in a mud-slinging match in public.

Fight slander

Supposing your rivals have started a campaign against you, it’s imperative to prove them wrong i.e. their accusation. Don’t slander them, as this may project you in bad night. Stay appreciative, polite, and diligent and refrain from negative gossip.

Find allies in high places

Seek help from someone in the top management. This can deter the designs of your enemies. While they may get increasingly jealous, they won’t create problems lest they beget the ire of a senior executive.

Voice your problem

Don’t appear weak and defenseless. Discuss the matter with your seniors in a formal manner.

Nail the culprit

Keep a record of the arguments you have had with the jealous individual and maintain some proof of the incident. For e.g. he sends you a nasty email , don’t reply back via mail. See that s/he has none of your words in writing. But keep a record of his /her hostility.

Make concessions

Remember you are striving to avoid a huge fight, hence give him/her every opportunity to back down. If s/he acts unusually nice accept it graciously even though you may suspect hidden intentions. The gesture might be an honest one. Try and spread the news that you are making an effort to better relationships.

  • J.Monica

    Good one. wonderful document very useful for the HR management. Thank you.

  • sreejith Menon

    Excellent and feasible . Thank you

  • Chetna Kochar

    Food for thoughts!! Vivid and Pragmatic

  • Donnie Wood

    I believe the thoughts are good. However, the article has many grammatical and spelling errors. It is hard to ignore these.

  • kumar

    That is a useful Article, applicable to every wake of social system…

  • Tarfa

    Good Points. Thanks.

  • umer

    This article is really a useful one………….

  • aswin

    Excellent document. I appreciate from core of my heart.

  • Arun

    Right methods to handle jealous workers shared in this article..


  • M R Mallikar


  • jitender

    useful article… if apply can be a usefull tool for damage control.

  • Sheetal N K

    This article was very good.

    Some points mentioned in this article are worth thinking about and also practise the same in our profession.

  • Mel

    Excellent article. thanks

  • Sandeep


  • Sin_gle_wicked

    Be careful. They may try to flip the script and label you as having paranoid personality disorder when you’re thinking they are the looney tunes….