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Mean Girls at Work: How to Stay Professional When Things Get Personal by Kathi Elster, Katherine Crowley

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CHAPTER 4Passively Mean

A “passively mean” girl is conflicted. On the one hand, she thinks she should be nice. On the other hand, she’s deeply competitive. These opposing forces inside her result in passive-aggressive behavior.

If you’re working with a passively mean girl, you’ll have a hard time pinning her mean actions down. You may think that she intentionally excluded you from a meeting or failed to give you important information, but should you confront her, she’ll always deny it. You end up feeling totally frustrated and confused.

Because passively mean girls present such a warm and friendly façade, it takes a while to identify them. Unlike very mean girls and the meanest girls, a passively mean girl will smile when she sees you, treat ...

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