According to a saying, putting two people in a room is the beginning of politics. Social stratification is part of every society, and even of the smallest organizations. Without a doubt, the workplace is one where you can find the biggest pressure, especially in terms of getting titles, higher positions, and especially leadership roles.

While there is no way you can avoid office politics, you can choose not to participate in any of it.
These are the things you can do:

1. Choose a workplace where performance is likely to be objective.

In some industries, employee performance is assessed based on whether a worker completes their tasks or not. Finance positions, for instance, have well-defined job responsibilities and measurable goals which are used as a basis for an employee's performance. If you are not comfortable with office politics, it would be better for you to get any of these jobs.

2. Play politics by making yourself important to a person who is good at playing office politics.

If you're not comfortable with doing the lobbying for yourself, then you might as well work for someone who is likely to do the lobbying for you. Make yourself an important component of your manager's goals so that they will be the one to protect you from office politics. The danger here, however, is when your manager ends up disliking you.

3. Don't keep chasing special projects and even promotions.

We all know that skills and abilities play an important role in a manager's decision of which employee deserves to be promoted. But it is also true that there are several factors that are also at play here, like politics. If you want to avoid getting involved in it, then you should just be confident that your contributions to the company will make you deserving of a higher position. You don't need to be friends with your boss just to get the promotion. Just focus on what you do best, and do it better than everyone else because eventually, it will do the talking.

4. Be friendly to your coworkers, but not too friendly.

Experts say that the best way to stay out of office politics is to share or reveal as little as possible about your personal life. Yes you have to be approachable and friendly, but you don't have to aim to be everyone's buddy. By allowing many people to know so much about you, you are exposing yourself too much and making yourself the easiest target of politicking.

5. Find a coach.

Coaching programs are not only for those who are confused and want career direction. Even those who are doing perfectly well in their careers may also benefit from having a coach. With the help of a ccareer coaching specialist, you will know what things you should and shouldn't do to be successful in your job and career. Your coach will also be reminding you of how you can stay away from workplace politics.

Author's Bio: 

Cecile Peterkin is a certified career and retirement coach, and a registered member of the Career Professionals of Canada and the International Coach Federation. She is also the Founder and Senior Career Strategist at Cosmic Coaching Centre, provider of career and life management services for middle managers and mid-career professionals across Canada, United States and Europe.