If our country’s headlining, often slanderous, politics aren’t stressful enough, many of us also have to deal with office politics. Who should you align with to get a project passed? What manager will support your hiring decisions? And the classic—who gets the best office or parking space? Office politics are everyday occurrences.

Yesterday, Promotional Consultant Today shared three strategies for navigating office politics from author Walt Grassl. Today, we share four more tips.

•    Have Many Networks. Develop relationships horizontally and vertically in your organization. Know your peers who work in other organizations. Know the people from top to bottom in your organization. Know the people within your supplier companies. Know your internal customers. These relationships will improve the likelihood of you learning things informally. This will help you and your organization look good formally. These relationships will allow you to be more successful.

•    Manage Knowledge. Manage it and share it with the people who need it. This will improve the value of your relationships. When you inform your team of a change in direction sooner, rather than later, you create good will. Why? They can immediately stop following the old course and redirect to the new course. They won’t feel like they’ve wasted their time and effort. However, one must be certain the change will occur. Things like impending job actions (layoffs, promotions, transfers) must never be shared until it is time. Never gossip at work and hold secrets close.

•    See the Big Picture. A common fallacy in the workplace is that my job and my organization contribute more than the rest to the success of the project or company. When employees realize that what they do is important, it’s a good thing. The inverse is true when the needs of the other employees and other organizations are discounted. Some decisions that flow down from above may not make sense to the team. Look at the bigger picture. Look at the needs of the other players. Understand the other’s position. Keep focused on the end-to-end process, not just your link in the chain. Understand your organization’s role and the roles of your internal suppliers and internal customers. This knowledge will help processes make sense.

•    Managing Conflicts. Inevitably, there will be tension and conflict between individuals and organizations. The best course of action is to be neutral. Facilitate communication and seek to find a third alternative that satisfies both parties. When you are one of the parties, know when to push back. What are the ramifications for bringing up the problem? Not every battle is worth fighting for. When you must address a conflict, understand the other’s point of view before you explain yours. Look for a win-win result. And never make it personal. Always focus on the issues.

Understanding office politics is critical to being successful. How you use your knowledge is even more important. When you use your political insights to manipulate or create win-lose situations, you lose influence. People won’t trust you. When you use political insights to create win-win results, you become a force to be reckoned with.

Source: Walt Grassl is a speaker, author and performer. He hosts the radio show “Stand Up and Speak Up” on the RadioStar Worldwide network. Walt has performed standup comedy at the Hollywood Improv and the Flamingo in Las Vegas and is an in-demand leadership speaker. For more information on bringing Grassl to your next event, visit http://www.waltgrassl.com/.