How to Handle Uncomfortable Situations at Work

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Whether it’s a stinky coworker or an inappropriately dressed assistant, you’re guaranteed to run into some awkward circumstances at work from time to time.

Here are five of the most uncomfortable, and some advice on how to handle them.

1. Your coworker slacks off constantly, while you’re hard at work. The solution: Try to ignore it. Sure, it’s possible your boss is letting your colleague get away with this behavior, but it’s also possible that you don’t realize your boss is addressing it behind the scenes. Either way, the answer for you is the same: If it’s not affecting your work, it’s not your business. If it does affect your ability to do your job—because you have to take on extra work, or because you’re dependent on your coworker to help you do your own job—then raise it with your boss from that perspective, keeping the focus on how it affects your productivity.