How to Deal with Difficult People

How to Deal with Difficult People

One of the ways I have grown in the understanding of conflicts is that they provide one with the opportunity to grow personally and professionally. Learning how to manage conflicts is critical in both personal and professional life. In the workplace, learning how to manage conflicts is a key leadership skill. Organizational leaders deal with conflicts involving employees or customers on almost daily basis. In addition, employees must learn to deal with conflicts before they escalate to levels requiring management intervention. Employees who are good at resolving conflicts are likely to become leaders in the future since it is a key leadership skill. Another way I have grown in the understanding of conflict and conflict resolution is that one can either apply negative or positive ways of resolving a conflict. An example of a positive way of resolving a conflict is through empathy. A negative aspect might be getting judgmental, which may aggravate the situation.

One can apply various strategies to improve day-to-day interactions at work. One of the ways of growing in my ability to understand and manage difficult interpersonal relations is by being a key listener. Listening is important since everyone wants to be heard. Parties in a conflict cannot achieve any progress unless one of them feels acknowledged. In listening, one should focus on what the other person is saying, rather than focusing on what to say next. Another way of dealing with difficult people is responding with empathy. This involves showing that one understands the feelings of another person. For instance, one can inquire in a friendly way why the other person refuses to talk. This would most likely open up communication. Empathy can help in dealing with a judgmental people, argumentative people, hostile people, and even those who refuse to talk.

When dealing with difficult colleagues, it is important to learn how to wait or be patient. When am argument occurs, it is not right for one to insist that they talk about it there and then. Giving the other person time before talking about the issue enables them to reflect on the issue and the actions they have taken. It is therefore important to learn not to respond immediately a conflict ensues. If the other party refuses to talk, one can emphasize on the need to solve things later. The disarming technique is another important way of managing difficult interactions at work. This technique involves agreeing with the other party on what they are saying. The disarming technique involves establishing the truth as per the other person’s perspective or point of view. Even when the other party is criticizing, there could be an aspect of truth in their criticism. Recognizing such aspects will encourage the other person to soften.

The key points to remember are to actively listen and to be empathetic. Listening makes the other party feel significant. Listening sends the message to the other person that one is interested in solving the problem. This makes them more reasonable in addressing the problem. Being empathetic is another key point to remember. Empathy is a crucial step in addressing almost all types of conflicts. Empathy is about showing that one understands the feelings of the other person.

Case: Listening at Different Levels

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