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Martin Baker

Clear Lessons & The Charity Learning Consortium


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Video: Dealing with difficult people


In the Clear Lessons video featured below, Zeina Bain suggests trying to work out what makes people tick, so you can work with their personality rather than against them.

“Having looked at the different types of people I've worked with, typically senior CEOs, or chief financial officers, I'm always trying to figure out what makes them tick.

Are they someone who's driven by ego, or personal achievement, or a need to constantly out compete their peers? Or is it someone who's genuinely driven by a financial reward as opposed to job satisfaction? Are they someone who has insecurities and therefore, they play at things in a certain way?

It's often those people that have a chip on their shoulder, or an insecurity, that don’t achieve as much as they could. And they're often the most difficult people to deal with in terms of trying to influence them.

What I've learned about handling difficult individuals is trying to get them offline, trying to get them to think that it was their idea, making them feel like they've had the last word but actually planting the seeds of different ideas as to how they could approach certain issues, pitching it in a way that appeals to their personal agenda, and personal outlook.

Just confronting someone, is not the best way to get results!”

Watch the full video 

More on Zeina...

Zeina Bain is a Managing Director at The Carlyle Group, advising on European buyout opportunities. Prior to joining Carlyle, Mrs. Bain was an Associate at European Digital Capital, a technology venture capital fund. Before that, she was an Investment Banking Analyst in the Emerging Markets group at Merrill Lynch. Mrs. Bain is a member of the Board of Directors of Atotech and the Innovation Group. She has previously served on the boards of AZ Electronic Materials, Britax Childcare, Firth Rixson, MPS, RAC, Stahl Holdings as well as having been an observer on the Board of Axalta.

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