• Getty

    Hive Mentality

    Buzzkill: You're The Workplace Queen Bee

    What do you do when you realize you're the office's alpha mean girl?

    After a dozen years spent logging long hours, working weekends, and making other sacrifices in the name of cancer research, Natalie got a new job, joining a big-time lab as department head and chief researcher in her sub-specialty. It was a huge promotion. From the beginning, Natalie felt immense pressure to convince her new bosses and co-workers—maybe even herself—that she was smart and talented enough to lead an entire team. That she deserved to be there. She was, after all, the only female department head, and she was reminded of this fact constantly.

    And so Natalie gave herself strict rules for how she thought a manager should behave. She didn’t socialize after work with anyone who reported to her, or even joke around much while in the office. She never shared details of her personal life with her staffers, nor asked for theirs. She wanted to be taken seriously. She wanted her team’s respect, not their friendship. More, she wanted to stay in charge of them.

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