How to deal with EVERY TYPE of leaders at WORK
While we all have times when we have dealt with difficult leaders, the most important thing however is, what did you do in this situation? Did you escape (for the moment), display the same behaviour back to the other person, or seek to understand yourself and the other people in this interaction? As a leader of people and teams, it’s important that you know how you interact and relate with others and how others see you. Having this knowledge will take you to even greater heights as a leader in the twenty first century!
YOUR SUCCESS can be DERAILED by difficult people
A BBC article indicates there’s nothing more unpleasant in the workplace than dealing with difficult people —a bad boss, colleagues, or a new hire who is the wrong fit. But, how you assess and approach these issues can be the key to getting past them successfully. A number of LinkedIn Influencers have weighed in on these topics and here’s what they said:
- Bernard Marr, CEO at Advanced Performance Institute. “Let’s face it; we have all seen and experienced bad bosses. There are the ones that bully, the ones that only care about themselves and their own career, the cowards that hide behind others,” wrote London-based Marr in his post Top 10 Tell-Tale Signs Of A Bad Boss. In many cases, people are not aware of why their bosses are, well, bad, explained Marr. Among his top 10 signs and types of bad bosses:
- The Ego-Tripper
- The Coward
- The Micromanager
- The Incapable
- The Over-friendly Mate
- The Bad Communicator
- The Plagiarizer
- The Negative
- The Ego-Centric
- The Criticizer
“When you get a boss with one or maybe two of the signs then you can usually manage around them,” wrote Marr. But a boss that shows several of the 10 bad-boss types can be impossible to work with.
- Deepak Chopra, Founder of the Chopra Foundation. At work and in life, the “path to success can be derailed by difficult people,” wrote Chopra in his post How to Handle Difficult People. “Everyone has a store of coping mechanisms that we resort to when we find ourselves in stressful situations. Some of us placate, others confront. Some balk, others become aggressive. When these first-response tactics don’t work… you have to dig deeper into yourself and find a better strategy,” Chopra wrote. Among the three solutions Chopra suggested: just walk away. “If you know the difficult person isn’t going to change, and if you’ve examined the unhealthy and healthy choices involved in putting up with them, you have a good foundation for making the right choice,” he wrote. “You will be able to look back with a sigh of relief and recognition that moving on was healthy and productive.”
- Liz Ryan, CEO and Founder of Human Workplace. In HELP! I Hired the Wrong Guy, Ryan advised a reader who has realized the person he hired for a key job three months ago turns out to be the worst hire he’s ever made. So what’s the reader to do? First, she wrote, realize that “Mistakes are good. We learn from them, although it can be painful learning.” But the key, Ryan explained, is to have the bad-fit employee leave without him feeling the need to badmouth you — or your company. That will clear the way for a new hire and keep the company’s reputation intact, she wrote.
9 tips to work with $@&* people
A Business Insider article provides “9 Useful Strategies to Dealing with Difficult People at Work.” Ever encountered someone who frustrates you so much that you feel like you want to pull your hair, jump around the room and just scream out loud? You’re not alone.
Over the years, I’ve encountered my fair share of difficult people. People who don’t turn their work in as promised, people who don’t show up for meetings, people who stick vehemently to their views and refuse to collaborate, people who push back on work that they’re responsible for – and more. After a while, I learned that these people are everywhere. No matter where you go, you can never hide from them. It isn’t feasible to quit every time someone has an opposing view. So rather than turn to some drastic decisions each time, why not equip yourself with the skills to deal with them? Here’s 9 tips which I’ve found to work:
- Be calm
- Understand the person’s intentions
- Get some perspective from others
- Let the person know where you are coming from
- Build a rapport
- Treat the person with respect
- Focus on what can be actioned upon
- Escalate to a higher authority for resolution
Or, consider HANDLING WITH CARE and KINDNESS!
In my blog, I referred to “How to Handle Challenging Co-Workers with Kindness.” It’s only natural that when you spend the majority of your week at work, the people there will get on your nerves. Whether someone is sexist, sucks up to the boss or whinges about everything, there’s bound to be someone who annoys you. There could even be a colleague that reminds you of a childhood bully; aggressive and often causing tense situations. The way we handle these difficult co-workers has a profound effect on our mental health, and our career as well. I’m all about kindness, and how it’s one of the most powerful weapons we have against the bullies and negative people of the world. Here’s how you can use kindness (and mindfulness) to deal with those colleagues that push our buttons:
- Understand Your Triggers. Everyone has buttons that, when pressed, can provoke a strong reaction. Yours could come from your family, how you were raised, or what you believe in, and may or may not be logical. Whether intentionally or not, these points are bound to be triggered through our day-to-day life. It’s important to do some self-reflection to identify your trigger points so that you can be more prepared to handle it when someone inevitably triggers you. Instead of snapping instantly, take a pause and consider what has happened and why. Is this person actually pushing your button, or are you just being too sensitive? How can you respond to the situation in a kinder, healthier way?
- Anger Isn’t An Option. Anger is harmful to your health, your career and your judgement. Even if someone at work is purposefully trying to make you angry, returning that anger will do irreparable damage to your reputation. It might be an instinct to react in anger when you’ve been treated poorly, but you can learn to avoid immediately turning to this reaction when faced with conflict. Mindfulness is key; stopping to take deep breaths before you respond allows you to handle the situation with kindness, calmness and rationality. If you really cannot control yourself, then the next best thing is to excuse yourself and step away from the confrontation. There’s no shame in choosing the ‘flight’ instead of ‘fight’ reaction.
- Put Yourself In Their Shoes. When someone is hurting you, why is it that they’re doing so? More often than not, it’s because they’re hurting inside. Keeping this in mind will help you be more compassionate towards your difficult co-worker. You’ll be able to understand just why they’re acting the way they are, and that will help you cope with their antagonistic behaviour. It also allows you to step back and look at the bigger picture, reducing conflict and helping you be less stubborn in your own views.
- Reflect On Why You Feel This Way And Learn From The Opportunity. Sometimes, it’s not actually the other person that is the issue at all. While this can be hard to realise, it will only benefit you and your workplace relationships in the long run. Maybe this co-worker bothers you so much because they represent what you don’t like about yourself? The other thing to do is try and be grateful for the experience, no matter how unpleasant. Each conflict can be turned into a learning opportunity, where you heal and discover more about yourself.
- Show Kindness To Yourself And Your Challenging Co-workers. Remember that holding onto anger and negativity ultimately harms ourselves more than anyone else. Instead of instantly reacting to a tense situation and adding fuel to the fire, take a deep breath, put yourself in their shoes and think about what kindness you’d want someone to show you if you were in that same position. Being the bigger person is rewarding; your well-being is improved and you’re showing your leaders that you can handle conflict with ease. Have the courage to be kind, even to those who hurt you.
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