Wouldn’t it be nice if your team was comprised of only easy-going individuals who never stressed out, never caused office drama and who could always be relied upon to do their jobs well? Every manager dreams of this type of office utopia, but in reality, every leader has to manage some tough personalities. While there is no “perfect” way to deal with difficult people, there are some tips you can use to help manage challenging personalities effectively.
1: Focus On Behaviors, Not Personalities
When faced with a difficult person, focus only on the situation at hand. Determine the exact nature of the problem that is occurring in that moment, and develop a solution that will get things moving forward as quickly as possible. This means focusing on the behavior you are seeing, and communicating to the employee how that action directly impacts their success. Focusing on specific actions prevents you from criticizing their personality or engaging in a conversation that could be taken as a personal attack. Don’t attempt to change the person, because you’ll never win. Instead, keep your focus on the actions and results you want to see today.
2: Get to Know Your Team
Abraham Lincoln is credited with the saying, “I don’t like that man. I must get to know him better.” Sometimes, it takes a digging a little deeper into who a person to understand why they act the way they do. While you don’t want to get too personal with your team or cross any boundaries, take steps to forge relationships with them and learn a little more about their families, hobbies and interests outside of work. This will build mutual trust and respect over time, which will make it easier to reach common ground with difficult people. You may also discover that someone isn’t actually always difficult. Instead, they may be experiencing a difficult time in their personal life, or they may be struggling with some aspect of their job that they were reticent to discuss before you took steps to build trust.
3: Focus on the Big Picture
There will be some difficult people who are effective at their jobs and don’t have too much impact on others. Others, however, become so toxic to the work environment that it can impact productivity and can drive talented members of the team to look for new jobs. Managers must always consider the overall cost to the organization when dealing with a difficult person. If one person drives others away and has a negative effect on output, it might be time to part ways.
It Starts with Building Great Teams
Building great teams is all about finding the right people to join the group. They have to have the right skills, to be sure, but they must also have the right personality to mesh well with the team. Finding those people can be a challenge, especially if you are under pressure to fill open positions quickly. If your company is looking for effective staffing solutions to help build productive teams, contact the experts at Bonney Staffing Center today.