One in Five Respondents to International Poll on Monster Willing to Switch Jobs to Escape Workplace Rivalries


An international poll conducted by Monster reveals that one in five (20%) respondents has left a job due to a rivalry in the workplace. An additional 26% have considered leaving a job because of a problematic workplace rival.

Monster, the worldwide leader in successfully connecting job opportunities to people, asked visitors to their site the question, “Have you ever considered leaving (or left) your job because of a workplace rival?” and received over 3,300 responses. International findings included:

  • 20% of respondents answered “I have left a job because of a workplace rival”
  • 26% of respondents answered “I have considered leaving a job because of a workplace rival”
  • 54% of respondents answered “I’ve never left or considered leaving a job because of a workplace rival”

Breaking down the numbers by region, German respondents have been the most negatively affected by workplace rivalries: 27% have left a job due to one, and 30% have considered doing so –the highest response rate for both options. Despite Germany’s elevated figures, EU respondents are otherwise the least bothered by workplace rivalries: only 18% have left a job due to one (the lowest response rate, internationally) and 57% have never left nor considered leaving a job due to a workplace rival (the highest response rate, internationally).

A separate survey on US Workplace Rivalry found that only 3% of respondents consider workplace rivalries to be wholly positive, while 47% consider them wholly negative and 50% believe they are both positive and negative. Other key findings of the survey include:

  • 73% of respondents have a workplace rival
  • 40% of respondents rated their workplaces as having the highest levels of rivalry (being highly competitive work environments)
  • Causes of workplace rivalry included: Co-Workers (49%); Boss/ Supervisor (44%); and Senior Management (31%)
  • Workplace rivalry reduced job performance for majority of workers – 55% claim it created undue stress/ reduced productivity; 20% claimed very negative impacts including getting into trouble with management and job loss. Only 6% claimed it inspired them to do some of their best work
  • Popular methods of handling workplace competition include: working hard and focusing on your goals (53%), communicating with your manager (37%), and learning new skills to outshine your competition (33%)

“Competition doesn’t have to be detrimental to a workplace; in fact, it can often be quite beneficial,” said Mary Ellen Slayter, Career Advice Expert for Monster. “Your company works hard to hire the best talent available, and rivalries are bound to occur when similarly skilled and motivated individuals work together. Balance is key. Let workplace competition motivate you to perform your best, but don’t get distracted by jealousy. Counter competitive tensions by finding common ground through sports, shared hobbies, or just having a drink after hours. If you can’t get the tension under control, find ways to distance yourself from your adversary. Explore your options- from switching desks, to switching companies- and remember that living (and working) well is the best revenge.”

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