The List: Top 7 ways to handle difficult employees

July 16, 2014

Having issues with difficult employees? Check out DLP's top seven tips for dealing with tricky interpersonal conflicts in the workplace.  

Having issues with difficult employees? Check out DLP's top seven tips for dealing with tricky interpersonal conflicts in the workplace.

 

01. Listen                                                                        

Before you jump to making a decision, set up a meeting with the employee just to listen to them. Are they being difficult because something is genuinely wrong? If so, seek to fix the problem first.

02. Ask yourself: Is it them? Or is it me?

Sometimes, conflict can stem from personality differences. Seek to understand whether the issues with an employee stem from real problems or from personality clashes. If the latter, consider giving all staff (including yourself) the Myers-Briggs test and then set up a time to discuss your personalities and how best to communicate with one another.

03. Institute a system                                                      

When dealing with a difficult person, chances are emotions are running high. Putting a disciplinary plan in place before emotions come into play will make the conflict smoother. Consider hiring a management consultant to put together a plan that will be fair and effective.

04. Don’t back down

If you have a good, fair system in place, stick to your guns. 

05. Be professional

No matter what happens or what kind of words are said (or emails sent), maintain your professionalism and don’t get sucked into a petty grudge match.

06. Be kind, regardless of what happens

You’re the employer, in a position of power over the employee. Be kind and gracious, even if the employee isn’t. It’ll go a long way toward making your own leadership that much better.

07. If necessary, part well

Sometimes, it’s impossible to salvage a working relationship. If that happens, part as well as you can. Be charitable, and remember that you’ve done the right thing for yourself and for your business. 

 

This article originally appeared in the March 2014 issue of Dental Lab Products. For more great articles about products in action, click here to subscribe to DLP's newsletter: http://bit.ly/18S8j4i