Tips For Managing Difficult People. - EmployeeConnect
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Tips For Managing Difficult People

Tips For Managing Difficult People.

Had management been easy, it would not have earned such a high standard within a corporate environment. There will always be a mix of some people who are difficult to manage compared to others. Some may be talented but not collaborative, while some may be collaborative and not highly talented. With such a varied mix of individuals, how can you manage difficult people effectively? This article is an attempt to provide you with a couple of handy tips to manage difficult people at the workplace.

Be cognizant that management is inherently complex

It is wise not to fight against certain realities. Do not get into a wishful thinking mode where you sit and wish and waste your valuable mental energy thinking how different it would have been, had it not been so challenging. Be cognizant of the fact that frustrations and challenging situations are part and parcel of management. Hence the compensation that you get is comparatively much higher. So, you need to maintain an attitude of positivity and approach the delicate issues of your employees with keenness and the determination to solve them to the best of your ability.

Do not avert conflict, but instead deal with it directly and evenness

Conflict is part and parcel of management. If you detest conflict, then management isn’t just your ball game. The best breeds of managers are not the ones who hate conflict, and neither do they pull down the organisation when a conflict occurs. You need to understand that you would need to continue working with these same individuals, hence it is best to look for fair and constructive solutions to the problems.

Try to view things through others’ perspective

This tip although a handy one is easier said than done. But you need to understand that there may be reasons as to why a certain individual is hard to manage compared to others. Analyse if he or she has always been like this, or is it due to any external factors which may have contributed towards the behaviour that he or she is presently projecting. Look within your own style of management. Maybe that could have triggered the behaviour of opposition within them. If you develop the habit of approaching a problematic situation in a holistic manner, you will certainly be able to gain an insight into the behaviour of the opposite party. If you look at a situation objectively, it will lead you to constructive solutions to solve the said problem.

Seek help when you need to

Although this is quite an easy step, it is quite often neglected. Understand that help is always likely to be around irrespective of the size of the organisation that you work with. Seek help from someone whose judgement you trust, so that it helps you to gain a perspective pertaining to a difficult employee. Seeking help is not at all a sign of weakness; rather it shows your sensible judgement. The Human Resource department can prove to be quite resource to establish working relationships with individuals irrespective of the position.

Set clear measurable job objectives

Setting clear and measurable goals that you and your employees can refer to often ensures that everyone is on track.  It makes the process of evaluating the performance of individuals more concrete and less vague.  When a problematic employee fails to achieve his or her goals, you have something completely tangible and concrete to discuss.  It is good to have data rather than mere opinions.

Channel your thoughts in terms of assets and liabilities

Channel your thoughts in such a manner that at the end of the day, ask yourself if is the employee is an asset or a liability to the organisation?  If the employee an asset, retain him.  If the employee is a liability, it is best to them go.  While this approach may seem to be a tad oversimplified, it has applicability in terms of management.  Does a problematic employee still add real value to the organisation?  There will be times when some of the most brilliant people you may be difficult to manage – who prefer to do things their own way.  But the advantages they brought to the organisation were far more as compared to the problems they caused. Such individuals are clearly assets.  On the other hand, if they became so disruptive that their accomplishments were underplayed by the problems they caused, then such individuals are liabilities, and it would be wise to let them go.  You must always work closely with Human Resources, to ensure terminations are handled in the right manner.

Byron Conway
byron@employeeconnect.com

Content Coordinator at EmployeeConnect