HOT TOPIC 4: Difficult or Just Different? Dealing with difficult people and situations in the workplace.

HOT TOPIC 4: Difficult or Just Different? Dealing with difficult people and situations in the workplace, Dee Oviatt, Facilitator, ATW Training & Consulting

Dealing with difficult people and situations in the workplace can be very challenging. Many either avoid difficult conversations altogether or do not handle such conversations effectively. But what if our perspective of others contributes to what makes conversations so challenging? Are others difficult, or just different?

It is more effective to think of problems as difficult and people as different. Recognizing differences in styles and expectations is an important interpersonal and leadership skill. We deal with people differences when we align to work together on issues rather than label others as “difficult” and work at cross purposes. When we prepare for challenging conversations and follow a three-step conversation model – initiate a conversation, explore issues, and focus on the future – we are more effective in dealing with difficulties in working together.

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