Working with other people won’t always be sunshine and puppies. There will be challenging moments, disagreements, and conflict.
Sometimes, you can address issues directly with your colleagues. However, there are other times that an escalation is required.
How you escalate is the key to maintaining healthy work relationships. It will also impact your long-term career success. People who handle escalations poorly end up burning bridges and damaging their professional reputation.
There have been times in my career that I had to escalate an issue. When I was younger, I wasn’t sure how to do this well. I learned the hard way, and finally found a model that works better for everyone involved.
I was also on the receiving end of numerous escalations over the 20+ years of my career. Some were handled well, and others were disastrous.
In one instance, someone escalated a “problem” they perceived that they were having with my team. They jumped multiple levels in the management hierarchy without e…