Office Survival Brought to You By: The Hunger Games!

So, I'm basically FREAKING OUT about the premiere of The Hunger Games, the first movie based on the Suzanne Collins trilogy of books about a futuristic North America in which a boy and a girl from each district are put in an arena to fight to the death . . . on live television. I'm obsessed with the books, and you better believe I'll be in the theater at 12:01am March 23!  

In the spirit of The Hunger Games, Savvysugar.com published an article on using Hunger Games-esque survival skills in the workplace! Luckily for you, they didn't include extreme violence.
 
 

Katniss Everdeen from The Hunger Games (source)
 
1) Image matters. Let's face it -- people make snap judgements about others based on outward appearance. Cinna, the stylist, knew that he had to make tributes Katniss and Peeta unforgettable, so it was important that they always look their best for the public right from the get-go. Be aware of your image at work, and make sure you're portraying yourself the way you want to be portrayed.
 
2) Display your own mockingjay pin on your desk. In the Hunger Games, the mockingjay bird was on a pin that Katniss wore into the area as a reminder of her home, but it evolved into a symbol of rebellion later in the series. While no one is suggesting you display symbols of rebellion at work, consider bringing photos or other personal reminders to decorate your work space and make you feel better (if it's permitted, of course!)
 
3) Build solid alliances. Katniss wouldn't have survived in the Hunger Games arena without making genuine, lasting alliances. Don't pretend to be friends with someone you dislike, but don't burn the bridge either. Find people you work well with who can help you professionally, and forget personal vendettas. They're not worth the headache!
 
4) Don't be too quick to judge. While image does matter to an extent, appearances can be deceiving! Katniss thought Peeta was against her in the beginning, but soon realized that everything he did was to protect her. If a co-worker snaps at you a few times, or you're frustrated by someone else's mistake, take a step back. Maybe that person is having a bad day, or has been thrust into an uncomfortable situation. Try to keep an open mind!
 
5) Make sacrifices. Katniss put herself in her sister's place for the Hunger Games. Sometimes at work, you need to be willing to go the extra mile to show 'em what you got. This might involve doing things you don't want to do, or working with someone you're not peachy keen on. Whining won't get you anywhere -- if it's truly unbearable, find a way to spin the situation to work for you.
 
6) Fight for what you believe in. Katniss is motivated by her undying devotion to her family, and she will do anything to keep them safe. Do you think you deserve a raise, a promotion, or just better treatment? Fight for it! But don't go in swinging blindly. Do your research -- find salary comparisons, compile evidence of the work you've done, and let your supervisors know you mean business!
 
The Hunger Games might be fiction, but you can learn some real-life lessons from books sometimes!
Good luck . . . and may the odds be ever in your favor!
 
Stay awesome!
 
Janelle