Tag: manage

Tips for Managing Difficult People at Work

Managing-Difficult-People-at-WorkManaging difficult employees is likely one of the least favorite aspects of your job.  Dealing with challenging workers can quickly bring down the morale of your entire crew.  Below are a few tips for managing the situation quickly and professionally.
– Sooner Rather Than Later:  It’s best to deal with challenging employees early on before it can begin to have an effect on the entire office.  Left unattended, the problem can cause other employees to become frustrated with you for not dealing with the situation.  Make the time to talk directly with the individual.  Before you do, it may be wise to take at least a moment for an inward reflection.  Make sure you’re not overreacting to something.  Be aware of any personal triggers for you.  Perhaps there’s something specific about the employee’s personality type that will always grate on you.  Just be mindful of your own issues before confronting the employee.  Then, when you do meet with them, it may be easier to remain calm and objective.  Try to use “I” statements instead of “you” to help avoid immediate defenses.
– Write it Down: In fact, write everything down.  Document instances when the employee was insubordinate or unprofessional in any way.  Be specific.  This can help protect you should there ever be any declaration of wrongful termination.  Be sure to also write down attempts to help the employee grow through trainings and mentoring.  It may also be helpful to document specific goals and consequences.  That way the employee has clear guidelines and expectations with little room for interpretation.
– Follow-Up: Don’t assume you can check in once and move on from there.  It’s important to follow-up with the employee to monitor progress.  Let them know how they’re doing.
Difficult employees will always exist.  Having the tools to manage them will be priceless.
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