Welch says the only time you should consider reporting a difficult co-worker to HR is if your boss is part of the problem — or is the problem.
"The facts are, bosses are human and sometimes they display or enable bad behaviors," says Welch. "Or — and I hope this is never the case for you — they just don't have the guts to deal with a difficult employee."
In any of these cases, Welch says HR may be your only hope. However, she warns that this tactic should only be used as a very last resort. Reporting the issue may backfire, especially if you and your HR rep don't have a confidentiality agreement.
Fortunately, Welch says, most of your professional experiences probably won't be complicated by challenging or unstable co-workers. But knowing how to deal with this issue when it arises is crucial to your career.
"School doesn't prepare you for that," says Welch, "but you can — and you should — prepare yourself."
Suzy Welch is the co-founder of the Jack Welch Management Institute and a noted business journalist, TV commentator and public speaker.
Video by Richard Washington
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