I ask the question with all the right intentions. Could you actually be one of those difficult people that you hate so much? I don’t think any of us realize that we can at times be difficult.
Me, I’ve been guilty of yelling, being a frequent critic and being slightly bullying at times. I hope I don’t do this often enough to be known as one of those difficult people but then you never know.
Take stock of your behaviour and try to figure out whether there are times that you can be difficult and you might be surprised at the answer.
The thing is that if you want to get things done, I believe that there are actually times that you need to be difficult. There are times that you’ll need to resort to quasi obnoxious behaviours to get your way. Sometimes a single minded dedication to something requires a bit of difficult behaviour.
But just a bit. So go out today and get something done by being difficult. Just don’t do it again tomorrow.
I believe I’m most difficult when people agree to do something I’ve asked for and then don’t do it when and how they said they would…. I accentuate the problem by constantly following up until its done as promised…does that make me a difficult person or just a demanding boss? We are all human but maybe it’s better to under promise and over deliver?
It’s all in perspective. A demanding boss is often viewed as a difficult person and it’s all in the eyes of the beholder.
Bob, if you are the boss, and your staff don’t deliver when they say they can, well, I guess it is your staff that are being difficult too. They put you in a compromising position where you have to act like an overbearing mother to get them to complete the duties they agreed upon.
My biggest issue with “difficult people” is the lack of comprehensive, respectful communication. I am associating difficult with an elevated emotional level – where demands are passionately delivered and “Sir, yes sir!” responses are the only acceptable ones.
A respectable leader will be able to assess and account for multiple viewpoints, and strategize for the most effective course of action by seeing more facets of the big picture. It is the tyrant who sees one (and only one) course of action and demands it be followed regardless of the challenges involved.
Hey, business is business, and the goal is to be profitable. But businesses are run by a team of humans, each with flaws, complexities and vulnerabilities to varying degrees. If the leader of these humans is able to motivate and direct them in a manner they find respectful and productive, then that leader will be revered by most to be great. The minority of those who refuse to recognize their leader’s greatness (as dictated by the majority) are your most likely ‘difficult’ culprits – your negative personalities that are no longer in an environment where being difficult is an acceptable contribution.
YOu’re really going wild this week Gord. Thanks for the input.
Where the heck is your advice on how to deal with difficult people? What kind of blog is this? I asked yesterday and I’m still waiting! Let’s go, let’s go – I don’t have all frickin’ week! C’MON! I signed up, I gave you my email, you let me know when there is a new post, and what do I get in return? Well I’ll tell you what I didn’t get – and that is advice on how to deal with difficult people! Sheesh! Maybe I have to write your blog for you is that it? What’s the problem here, Charles?
[As I hope you’ve guessed, I’m practicing my obnoxious and difficult behaviour as per your instruction. There is a sense of satisfaction in doing that and one can understand how it can inflate the bravado, but I’ve just lost some self-respect at the same time. I won’t be doing that tomorrow, also as per your instruction. This behaviour is a very effective manipulation when used responsibly and under the right circumstances (sometimes people just need a swift kick in the ass), but repeated practice reveals a lack of tact, a lack of interpersonal skills, insecure leadership, and the potential threat of retribution from an equally obnoxious and difficult person. Why give the disgruntled postman additional reason to, well, go postal?
A little bit of conflict or elevated passion can be good for business, but too much can result in a collapse of production. And then HR people get involved, and someone gets canned, and there’s rumblings amongst the staff, a pervasive negativity exists, people keep their guard up, and Employment Standards get called, then someone has a heart attack, until finally you just have to say, “Mayor Ford, I quit!”]
I’m doing some interesting research and finding that most organizations don’t support healthy competition. Now I imagine that they don’t like unhealthy competition either so I guess that competition at work is a big no-no. Without competition I guess any conflict is verboten as well.