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How to be persistent at work without being obnoxious

Offering value

Effective persistence should always be based on providing incremental value.

From your conversation, you may have gathered insights on something that is important to the other persons, such as family, projects, or key interests. Offer an introduction or invite them to an event of importance.

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How to be persistent at work without being obnoxious

How to be persistent at work without being obnoxious

https://www.fastcompany.com/90414836/how-to-be-persistent-at-work-without-being-obnoxious

fastcompany.com

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Key Ideas

Being assertive

In some workplace situations, being persistent can be a sign of confidence and strength. Other times, however, not taking "no" for an answer can make you seem rude and brand you as someone to be avoided.

It is good then, to know how to be assertive without being obnoxious.

Valuing time

No one is interested in an elaborate saga. Instead, ask a short, clear question on a subject in which the other person has expertise. They'll often be glad to help.

Follow up on an agreed time. If they tell you they’ll be busy until the fall, then don’t send them another message on July 31st. Wait until autumn starts and then send a polite note.

Reaching out

  • Consider reaching out to someone with different 'touches', such as a phone call, email, written letter, or an appropriate gift. 
  • Pace your follow-ups. Every two weeks is a good starting place, and if they don't respond, try a monthly follow-up. 
  • Give them an 'out' if they need one.
  • Keep correspondence light and ongoing, instead of only reaching out when you need help.

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Work on cultivating personal connections with your colleagues, and allow them to get to know you. 

You don’t have to be “the greatest person in the room” or make sure “everyone is blown away by your charisma.” You just need to have good rapport with your colleagues. That way, they won’t impute negative intentions or motives to you.

Listen before you try to persuade
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Research has shown that social rejection activates many of the same brain regions involved in physical pain, which helps explains why disapproval stings.

Approval-seeking territory

You're in this territory if you:

  • Change or downplay your point of view to appease your boss or agree with the rest of the team in meetings.
  • Compliment colleagues’ work, so they’ll like you.
  • Always say yes to requests for your time, even if it means compromising your professional boundaries.
  • Fail to speak up if you’ve been treated unfairly by a co-worker or boss.
  • Become upset or insulted when someone disagrees with you or heavily edits your work.
Behind Your Need for Approval

Reflect on how your childhood or early development may be contributing to your current approval-seeking behavior. In many cases, a tendency to seek approval at work stems from something in your past. 

For example, were you taught to respect authority growing up? If so, you may feel uncomfortable expressing disagreement in work contexts.

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