According to Robert Sutton, a professor at Stanford University, women are often good at reading emotions and subtly harassing coworkers. (Reference 1.) Small pointed digs can make female bullies more difficult to deal with than someone who is an obvious troublemaker. Women may backstab and hurt other women in an attempt to exclude them. Don't let female troublemakers ruin your work environment. Use a few strategies to deal with them.
Look the troublemaker in the eye and listen to her during times when she may be shouting at you. Let her continue to vent until she finally gets tired and stops. Repeat her concerns back to her and offer possible solutions to fix whatever her issues are.
Deal with the troublemaker in a calm, professional manner. Avoid showing her that you are upset. She wants to make you upset, and showing her that you might be may only further encourage her to cause trouble.
Deal with a sneaky coworker by telling her that you are aware of what she's doing. Tell her that if she does not stop, you will report her to the human resources department, then walk away without engaging in an argument.
Document all instances of troublemaking at work. Write down the date, time and what happened.
Report the troublemaker to your immediate supervisor. Bring your documentation with you to point out everything that has happened. Remain calm and explain how this is affecting your job performance.
Talk to the human resources department if things do not get better after talking to your supervisor.
- Avoid letting the troublemaker upset you so much that it negatively impacts your work performance.