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training on difficult people



Does anyone please have any ideas for a one day training course in dealing with difficult and negative people. The course is aimed at managers and supervisors who deal with people who are angry, aggressive, lazy, negative, rude etc

6 Responses

  1. reflection
    Hi Katy
    There is an ancient video from Video Arts entitled “If Looks Could Kill”….it stresses (amongst other things), that “behaviour breeds behaviour”… and contains a numbe of scenes where the behaviour of the first party (the manager/supervisor in your case) effects the behaviour of the second party (the “difficult people”).
    This would not be a stand alone course in its own right but would be a valuable addition to your course.

  2. Difficult Delegates

    There is a session on ‘Dealing With Difficult Delegates’ at the forthcoming TalkingTraining 2008 Conference being held in London on the 4th December.

    visit www dot cieh dot org/events/TalkingTraining for further details

    Hope this is of use

  3. renaming the issue
    Hi Katy,
    We run lots of communication workshops where we suggest that managers/supervisors/ customer service agents think about ‘people with difficulties’ rather than ‘difficult people’.
    What is it about the situation that is causing people to behave in this way? Are they always angry, aggressive, lazy etc or is this just the way they are behaving in a particular situation?

    It is usually more helpful to think in terms of people’s behaviour in a situation rather than about a fixed personality.

    I’ll be happy to share more ideas and explain in more detail. Give me a call 0118 983 6339 or email me [email protected]

    And a good book recommendation would be ‘Assertiveness at work’ by Ken and Kate Back.

    Good luck with your workshop.

  4. Try NLP

    I’d like to echo what others have said, in that’s it’s not usually as straightforward as ‘difficult people’ – it is usually a combination of facts that make a situation difficult. Personality clashes, confidence, motivation, assumptions (from both sides) as well as wrong intepretation of behaviour all add up to make difficult situations at work.

    A couple of years ago, I complete a NLP business practitioner programme (so very focussed on work situations), and it put a lot of this stuff into perspective, and really helped me to see many alternatives for dealing with such situations. My advice would be to check out an NLP programme near you.

  5. Human Givens
    Try looking at the concept of Human Givens. In a nutshell – we have needs which, if not met, result in behaviours designed to help us meet the needs.

    Of course, there is more to it than that, as mentioned below and if you would like a copy of Matrix FortyTwo’s ‘There’s no such thing as a Difficult Delegate’ reference guide, please email me at [email protected]. Although designed for trainers in the classroom it contains lots of information about dealing with behaviours that can be transferred outside of the training environment.

    Hope this helps.

    Jooli Atkins

  6. PM
    Hi Kathy
    In my experience in the private, public and not for profit sector, I have found only one method of approaching people who are ‘angry, aggressive, lazy, negative, rude etc’ and that is through the process of performance management.

    People such as you describe are in desperate need of feedback and absolute clarity on what is, and is not, acceptable behaviour in the workplace, and equally they need to know the extent of the consequences of any ‘unhelpful’ behaviours that they choose to demonstrate(from a disciplinary perspective) if they subsequently choose to then ignore the feedback (and yes that probably will mean that the worse or most repetative of offenders are asked ot leave the organisation for unacceptable behaviour).

    This suggestion is of course based on an assumption that your organisation has a PM process in place, that the people you are talking about are in fact adults, salaried, understand that the organisation pays them for their knowledge, skills and acceptable behaviours while at work, and that the managers and supervisors who are responsible for them have been giving them appropriate behavioural feedback ‘in the moment’ (i.e. when they see unhelpful behaviour occuring), and are not themselves demonstrating ‘unhelpful’ behaviours when with such people (i.e. colluding) in order to be seen as ‘one of the boys or girls’.

    If you would like to talk it through to explore what other options you might have, or to fill me in with the context so I can be more specific, please feel free to give me a call on 07702 433284.

    Kind regards, Wayne

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