How to Help and Deal With Problematic People at Work

Many of us at one time have had someone on our team at work who is difficult to work with. Whether it’s that they cause you upset, frustration or out and out anger, if you have a problematic employee on your team, you are not alone. Rather than give up or quit to escape them, it is better to learn skills to deal with them effectively.

In this post, we look at some useful approaches and tips for how to cope and handle problematic people in the workplace

Always Remain Calm

As hard as it may sound, you must remain calm when dealing with someone who is frustrating you. Being angry and shouting will not get the best results. With calmness there is a sense of you being centred and in control and therefore easier to respect. It is often the case that having a calm attitude will show the person that despite their actions, you are going to stay calm and it might move them to work more cooperatively with you.

Try to Understand Their Motivations

No one is rarely being difficult just to be difficult in the workplace. There is usually an underlying problem or reason for their behaviour. It is therefore important to work out what that trigger may be or what their problem in life is and get them the help they need. If they have serious issues, they are dealing with outside of work that is affecting their performance and business relationships, taking the time to understand them and offering help where possible may provide them with a way out.

Get a Second Opinion

As we have all had to deal with difficult people in the past, it can be helpful to speak to friends, managers or other colleagues about your issues with the other person. They will often have a different perspective and look at the situation in a different way to you. This can often help to find a new approach to handling it.

Work On Your Relationship

A lot of the issues we often have with other people we work alongside is that there is not a lot of time spent actually directly conversing and getting to know one another. Outside of using messaging, emails and computers to communicate, some people don’t spend much time with their fellow colleagues, which is obviously going to affect how they work together.

Spend some time with your colleagues, especially the difficult ones, outside of work, go for a meal or drinks together and get better acquainted with them as a human being and not just fellow employees.

Always Treat Then Respectfully

People treat others often the way they have been treated. Take an honest look at yourself and your dealings with the other person. Are they solely responsible? Have you always been respectful to them? If you haven’t, it is time to change your attitude and how you treat them. Even if it is more their issue than yours, don’t let that stop you from being respectful.

They may be won over in the end by your insistence on being respectful despite however they act.

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