Working With Difficult People

Why does every workplace seem to have one or two individuals who seem to get on your last nerve? They can operate in leadership, at peer level or even can be a direct report. You may even describe them as natural office bullies, arrogate, obnoxious, can’t trust, no tact, or they can even retaliate with long term grudges. They could be people who work at much slower pace or they push hard for selfish policies that are bad decisions for the office.

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These difficult people operate like they hold inflated power and are known to abuse the chain of command when they get charged up. They may be complainers or whiners that talk behind people’s back. I think you may have the picture, right? You may have someone who comes to mind?

The question now is how can you manage these relationships?

1. We must become pragmatic in our tactics to overcome these moments of personal tension with difficult people. It all starts with emotional self management – this is the skill to transform draining negative forces in to more positive behavior. Choosing the way to handle a particular issue is always a choice. (Positive or negative)
2. They may not realize that their behavior is so annoying to others.
3. Their bad behavior may be related to personal issues outside of the workplace. Try to understand the motive for their behavior. Spend some time with them.
4. As hard as it is, resist the temptation to talk about them behind their back unless you have the guts to say it to their face. You usually will get that opportunity if you have a habit of talking about others.

You must understanding that some of your own behaviors can be as difficult to others. Humility always comes before honor. This is great a great starting point to remember when tension happens. Try to always maintain a professional demeanor that is respectful to others. Leaders strive for an atmosphere of honest feedback and constructive criticism. If you can encourage this as a leader, it will not always solve the problem but it will give the best chance for success.

What if your actions were the catalyst in your office to restore proper respect, patience and right professional tone? What if you could make a difference? Attitude is everything!

How do you handle conflicts with difficult colleagues?

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