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DEALING WITH DIFFICULT PERSONALITIES
 A Mentoring Moment From MSgt. Allan Folsom
OPA-C/CSFA USAF.
OBJECTIVES
 Become better leaders by learning how to deal
effectively with difficult personalities
 This will promote unit cohesion/effectiveness and
aide in mission accomplishment
 You will be able to “Bring out the best” in your
subordinates
 Lastly, perhaps learn a little something about
yourself.
IDENTIFYING DIFFICULT PERSONALITIES
 Hard core bully
 Ego centered prince or princess
 Passive Aggressive
 The baby
 Negative Ned or Nancy
 People Pleaser
 The Non player
THE HARD CORE BULLY
MODUS OPERANDI
 Hostile, Abusive, Intimidating,
 Are always right and will charge like angry bulls if
you cross or challenge them
YOUR RESPONSE
 Take a deep breath, let them blow off steam
 Draw the line; DO NOT LET THEM GET ABUSIVE
 Address them by name, title rank to maintain control
 State your position clearly
 Avoid arguments, you wont win a battle with them
especially in public.
 Learn to set boundary early on
HERE’S AN EXAMPLE
EGO CENTERED PRINCE/PRINCESS
MODUS OPERANDI
 Are the “Experts” who know more than anyone
about subject
 Facts are “power” to them, making them feel
superior
 They Basically want to feel special and long to be
center stage
YOUR RESPONSE
 You cant fake it with them, so know your facts
 You can also capitalize on what they know by
asking questions of them
 They love to show off and have others appreciate
their knowledge, utilize this as a leader by giving
them praise and recognition skillfully.
 This will lead them to come down from their towers
IN SHORT, APPEAL TO THEIR EGO…
COMMERCIAL BREAK
PASSIVE/AGRESSIVE
MODUS OPERANDI
 They often take potshots
 Try to undercut your authority in devious ways
using sarcasm, often disguised as a joke
 They will not be direct with their criticism
 They tend to drag down morale, so you have to
deal with them.
YOUR RESPONSE
 Turn situation away from personalities and back to
tasks involved.
 Use owning statements with them to assert
leadership “I need you to accomplish this”
 Once they realize you wont be pushed off task by
their sniping, they usually stop
 Don’t confront publically, do it in private, they don’t
like confrontation/center stage.
THE WHINING BABY
MODUS OPERANDI
 See everything negatively by complaining, whining
acting defeated.
 They think that they have little or no value, no-one
thinks they are important
YOUR RESPONSE
 First Listen, then steer them towards facts which
are sometimes far less negative than they seem
 Maintain control by bringing up negatives yourself
then dismiss them logically
 Direct their attention to the positives of situation
 When a negative question is asked by them, turn to
the rest of the group to answer, don’t give much eye
contact
 Get them oriented on a task
NEGATIVE NED OR NANCY
MODUS OPERANDI
 Very Similar to Whiner
 Distrusts anyone in power
 Believes his/her way is only way
 Motto is “See I Told You So!!”
 Always see the downside of every issue
YOUR RESPONSE
 Stay Positive but realistic
 Delay discussing solutions as they will dismiss
them as you bring it up
 Refuse the easy trap of an argument and stick with
your facts, sometimes truth is powerful
HERE’S AN EXAMPLE FOR DEALING WITH
WHINER/NEGATIVE NED
PEOPLE PLEASER
MODUS OPERANDI
 Easy to like, however difficult to work with due to
over committing themselves and their staff
 They have an Inability to set proper boundaries and
simply say “NO”
 Usually hyper sensitive types who wear heart on
their sleeves
YOUR RESPONSE
 Limit how much you ask of them as they tend to
miss deadlines and will be disappointed
 In meetings they volunteer for far too much,
therefore gently emphasize boundaries by being
task specific.
 Affirm their contributions and help them say no.
NON PLAYER/LONER
MODUS OPERANDI
 Most difficult types to deal with
 Do not reveal their motivations
 Tend to be lone wolves
 You will end up in a guessing game as to what
motivates them or makes them “tick”, keep trying
though.
 It is vital to get them involved so they don’t leave
with hidden agendas and counter the teams goal
 Can sometimes be overtly hostile
YOUR RESPONSE
 Most effective strategy is to draw them out with
open ended questions
 Wait them out in a controlled fashion even if the
silence between you grows, keep them busy with
tasks that they can focus on like supplies or
equipment.
 Eventually they will give off a clue as to where their
motivations lie. Work with them, move them
towards their goals and they will flourish
 You might have to take your leadership to the next
level…
TAKE A MOMENT FOR SELF EXAMINATION
 Characterize the difficult people in your life, identify
the traits and personalities that you see and make
index cards on how to deal with them, review the
cards before a meeting, you will be surprised by the
outcome
 Visualize your confrontation and rehearse these
techniques until comfortable
 The system WORKS!
ENCOURAGE PEOPLE TO CHANGE
 Remember, Everyone has value
 When you ignore people they don’t change and
YOU FAIL as a leader
 When you support positive change and refuse to
indulge their behaviors you help them grow
 You may never see it but they will thank you one
day for your care and leadership
KNOW WHEN TO CALL IN HELP
 Some people may have more than just personality
traits going on, there may be problems at home or
in their lives.
 Keep in mind that you cannot, nor should you
concern yourself with the intimate details of their
lives beyond the professional relationship.
 Listen and call in help when needed in form of an
arbiter, counselor or medical professional. Neutral
parties can valuable
 When dealing with a group project, a professional
facilitator can be of some use to refocus group
IF ALL ELSE FAILS, IMPLEMENT THE
NUCLEAR OPTION
NUCLEAR OPTION, PART 1
 Must use caution, usually last ditch effort to get
person involved.
 Implemented when all other options are exhausted
 Must be rooted in your authority and in some cases
be prepared to be harsh if necessary.
 Part 1 is used as SHOCK and AWE. Hopefully it
will wake them up.
NUKE OPTION 2 LEAD BY EXAMPLE!
NUKE OPTION PT 2; PUNITIVE ACTION OR
OPERATION PAPER TIGER!
 When it comes to enforcing punitive action, you
need time, date and place, persons involved,
witnesses etc.
 JAG or Chain of Command will basically want to
know Who, What, When, Where and How.
 Keep documented, detailed notes, dates time
witnesses
 I Keep detailed journals of everything…
WHAT IS THAT WILL PROTECT YOU?
THE TRUTH!
IN CLOSING
 Remember leadership demands that you see the
whole picture, not just focus on personalities, train
yourself to recognize them
 Know yourself most of all and learn everything you
can about the people you lead, in the end they will
thank you for your commitment to them
 Do not compromise your authority, if you do you will
fail.
THIS HAS BEEN A TRUNK MONKEY
PRODUCTION

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dealing with difficult people

  • 1.
  • 2. DEALING WITH DIFFICULT PERSONALITIES  A Mentoring Moment From MSgt. Allan Folsom OPA-C/CSFA USAF.
  • 3. OBJECTIVES  Become better leaders by learning how to deal effectively with difficult personalities  This will promote unit cohesion/effectiveness and aide in mission accomplishment  You will be able to “Bring out the best” in your subordinates  Lastly, perhaps learn a little something about yourself.
  • 4. IDENTIFYING DIFFICULT PERSONALITIES  Hard core bully  Ego centered prince or princess  Passive Aggressive  The baby  Negative Ned or Nancy  People Pleaser  The Non player
  • 6. MODUS OPERANDI  Hostile, Abusive, Intimidating,  Are always right and will charge like angry bulls if you cross or challenge them
  • 7. YOUR RESPONSE  Take a deep breath, let them blow off steam  Draw the line; DO NOT LET THEM GET ABUSIVE  Address them by name, title rank to maintain control  State your position clearly  Avoid arguments, you wont win a battle with them especially in public.  Learn to set boundary early on
  • 10. MODUS OPERANDI  Are the “Experts” who know more than anyone about subject  Facts are “power” to them, making them feel superior  They Basically want to feel special and long to be center stage
  • 11. YOUR RESPONSE  You cant fake it with them, so know your facts  You can also capitalize on what they know by asking questions of them  They love to show off and have others appreciate their knowledge, utilize this as a leader by giving them praise and recognition skillfully.  This will lead them to come down from their towers
  • 12. IN SHORT, APPEAL TO THEIR EGO…
  • 15. MODUS OPERANDI  They often take potshots  Try to undercut your authority in devious ways using sarcasm, often disguised as a joke  They will not be direct with their criticism  They tend to drag down morale, so you have to deal with them.
  • 16. YOUR RESPONSE  Turn situation away from personalities and back to tasks involved.  Use owning statements with them to assert leadership “I need you to accomplish this”  Once they realize you wont be pushed off task by their sniping, they usually stop  Don’t confront publically, do it in private, they don’t like confrontation/center stage.
  • 18. MODUS OPERANDI  See everything negatively by complaining, whining acting defeated.  They think that they have little or no value, no-one thinks they are important
  • 19. YOUR RESPONSE  First Listen, then steer them towards facts which are sometimes far less negative than they seem  Maintain control by bringing up negatives yourself then dismiss them logically  Direct their attention to the positives of situation  When a negative question is asked by them, turn to the rest of the group to answer, don’t give much eye contact  Get them oriented on a task
  • 21. MODUS OPERANDI  Very Similar to Whiner  Distrusts anyone in power  Believes his/her way is only way  Motto is “See I Told You So!!”  Always see the downside of every issue
  • 22. YOUR RESPONSE  Stay Positive but realistic  Delay discussing solutions as they will dismiss them as you bring it up  Refuse the easy trap of an argument and stick with your facts, sometimes truth is powerful
  • 23. HERE’S AN EXAMPLE FOR DEALING WITH WHINER/NEGATIVE NED
  • 25. MODUS OPERANDI  Easy to like, however difficult to work with due to over committing themselves and their staff  They have an Inability to set proper boundaries and simply say “NO”  Usually hyper sensitive types who wear heart on their sleeves
  • 26. YOUR RESPONSE  Limit how much you ask of them as they tend to miss deadlines and will be disappointed  In meetings they volunteer for far too much, therefore gently emphasize boundaries by being task specific.  Affirm their contributions and help them say no.
  • 28. MODUS OPERANDI  Most difficult types to deal with  Do not reveal their motivations  Tend to be lone wolves  You will end up in a guessing game as to what motivates them or makes them “tick”, keep trying though.  It is vital to get them involved so they don’t leave with hidden agendas and counter the teams goal  Can sometimes be overtly hostile
  • 29. YOUR RESPONSE  Most effective strategy is to draw them out with open ended questions  Wait them out in a controlled fashion even if the silence between you grows, keep them busy with tasks that they can focus on like supplies or equipment.  Eventually they will give off a clue as to where their motivations lie. Work with them, move them towards their goals and they will flourish  You might have to take your leadership to the next level…
  • 30. TAKE A MOMENT FOR SELF EXAMINATION  Characterize the difficult people in your life, identify the traits and personalities that you see and make index cards on how to deal with them, review the cards before a meeting, you will be surprised by the outcome  Visualize your confrontation and rehearse these techniques until comfortable  The system WORKS!
  • 31.
  • 32. ENCOURAGE PEOPLE TO CHANGE  Remember, Everyone has value  When you ignore people they don’t change and YOU FAIL as a leader  When you support positive change and refuse to indulge their behaviors you help them grow  You may never see it but they will thank you one day for your care and leadership
  • 33. KNOW WHEN TO CALL IN HELP  Some people may have more than just personality traits going on, there may be problems at home or in their lives.  Keep in mind that you cannot, nor should you concern yourself with the intimate details of their lives beyond the professional relationship.  Listen and call in help when needed in form of an arbiter, counselor or medical professional. Neutral parties can valuable  When dealing with a group project, a professional facilitator can be of some use to refocus group
  • 34. IF ALL ELSE FAILS, IMPLEMENT THE NUCLEAR OPTION
  • 35. NUCLEAR OPTION, PART 1  Must use caution, usually last ditch effort to get person involved.  Implemented when all other options are exhausted  Must be rooted in your authority and in some cases be prepared to be harsh if necessary.  Part 1 is used as SHOCK and AWE. Hopefully it will wake them up.
  • 36. NUKE OPTION 2 LEAD BY EXAMPLE!
  • 37. NUKE OPTION PT 2; PUNITIVE ACTION OR OPERATION PAPER TIGER!  When it comes to enforcing punitive action, you need time, date and place, persons involved, witnesses etc.  JAG or Chain of Command will basically want to know Who, What, When, Where and How.  Keep documented, detailed notes, dates time witnesses  I Keep detailed journals of everything…
  • 38. WHAT IS THAT WILL PROTECT YOU? THE TRUTH!
  • 39. IN CLOSING  Remember leadership demands that you see the whole picture, not just focus on personalities, train yourself to recognize them  Know yourself most of all and learn everything you can about the people you lead, in the end they will thank you for your commitment to them  Do not compromise your authority, if you do you will fail.
  • 40. THIS HAS BEEN A TRUNK MONKEY PRODUCTION