How to Help a Colleague Who Seems Off Their Game

I read this article sometime in 2018 and wanted to share it more widely. We all have colleagues at work who may not be achieving their targets or on top of their game. This article explores ways in which you can help such a colleague.

A three step process is outlined in the article to help colleagues who are “off their game”.

  1. Acknowledge – While you can’t force a colleague to share what they are going through, but just asking as to what’s happening with them helps. It makes them feel you care. With the world going virtual by design and by force (Covid19), its important to keep up the human touch points.
  2. Validate – The article says, don’t just acknowledge your colleague’s struggle, also validate if they aren’t struggling with the Imposter syndrome and consequently Social Comparison. “…Imposter syndrome is a common feeling where people believe they’ve risen to a position they don’t deserve. Imposter syndrome is reinforced by the tendency to compare yourself to other people.” As you try to validate let your colleague know about some of your own challenges when you took on some project or were new to the team. It helps them know that they aren’t alone and that you are a safe person to share their frustrations with.
  3. Plan – If you colleague does share his/her problems with you, also plan the way forward with them.  They may be in the wrong role, or they may be in the wrong team or they might have issues with their manager. You can help them to pursue other opportunities within the organization and in some cases even outside. Sometimes, the role is right and everything else is fine but the colleague needs help with getting things done. You can help them navigate through the bottlenecks in the organization if that is the case.

Read the detailed article – How to Help a Colleague Who Seems Off Their Game

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