119. How to Navigate Office Politics | with Bhavna Dalal

Bhavna Dalal is the founder and CEO of Talent Power Partners, a leadership development consulting company—and she's highly aligned with the work I do in my own consulting and coaching practice. She’s an executive master coach, best-selling author, speaker, electronics engineer, and MBA. She does it all.

In her new book, “Checkmate Office Politics,” she confronts workplace dynamics head-on and explains the factors that influence it. This book invites you to understand the political machinery through extensive, simple, practical advice to navigate workplace politics effectively and grow without compromising your ideals.

Through our discussion today, we come to understand her journey, how she launched her business, what was happening in her life that allowed her to explore this side of herself, and what it means to build a practice and reputation to the point where editors seek you out to write a book, and of course, how you can better navigate the tricky sea of office politics.

How to Navigate Office Politics:

  • There is a model that emerged for Bhavna as she studied office politics. Part of that relates to the concept of self-identity.

  • Navigating office politics also requires a combination of self-awareness and empathy. Understand who you are and what your communication preferences are, but also understand that not everyone will have those same preferences. You need to find a way to navigate those differences and make sure you treat people as individuals.

  • There is a certain vocabulary that works well in the office setting. Avoid using terms like “should” that make people feel at lack. Try to use inclusive, empowering language such as “can.”

  • Have difficult conversations. Often times we make assumptions about another person’s intentions or how they feel when if we just confronted them and asked we would be able to serve better.


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