Ah, I’m sure every reader has run across such situations. Good news — this Business Week article offers helpful advice:
"Sometimes, even casual exchanges can set co-workers off. When you hit a nerve, learn from the experience instead of snapping back
"It’s pleasant to walk into the office on a sunny morning and hear ‘Good morning!’ from your cheerful co-workers. It’s something else entirely to say ‘Good morning’ to a colleague and be met with ‘Keep your good morning to yourself!’ But that’s what happened to a friend of mine at work not long ago. Talk about a hostile work environment!
"As we all know, there are people who are always in a sour mood and never fail to let people know it. Fair enough—if you know that John is evil on Mondays or that Janice gets cranky after lunchtime, you can avoid those people as much as possible at those times. What can take you by surprise is people’s hidden sensitivities."
The complete article offers several useful tips.
Author "Liz Ryan is an expert on the new-millennium workplace, a former Fortune 500 HR executive and the author of Happy About Online Networking: the Virtual-ly Simple Way to Build Professional Relationships. "