Your colleague steals your ideas, projects those as her own, she is seen in a better light, you do not get credit for your work and you get marginalised. You feel shocked, angry, cheated and frustrated. Some say, your work should speak for itself. You do not know if you should ignore and stay positive or retaliate, confront, counter the claim publicly. Everyone else forms an opinion how good she is and her ideas. You are not in the reckoning. What do you do?
It is hard to stay objective when you are emotionally charged. However, one has to curb the itch of confronting the person on the spot or taking it to the boss. No point creating a scene then and there!
Sometimes, you might be judgmental about your colleague and bring up a bias in your mind that he or she is an idea-stealer. One must take a pause and look within if there is a bias against the person just because of one or two experiences. If so, you might be accusing the person unjustly! You should seek another point of view about the situation, maybe from your boss or peer.
Sometimes, you might be too greedy of the spotlight and unfairly desirous of recognition. So, you should discuss with your colleague one on one to understand the situation with an open mind. One must not conclude that you are being victimised and your ideas are being maliciously stolen.
Every organization has its own norms and practices around recognition, rewards, metrics, a delegation of work, peer communication and engagement with the manager. Based on these, you must know the best way to create an impact on the business, showcase your work and work together with the others. Your company may encourage people to step up and be cut-throat while others may want you to put your team first and so on. Learning to structure your ideas and the way you present them within the company’s culture would help you earn all the recognition that you deserve and prevent theft of ideas.
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