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151 Quick Ideas to Deal With Difficult People

Book Description

If you have ever wished you had the equivalent of a “Nanny 911” to defuse tensions in the office, your wish has come true. 151 Quick Ideas to Deal With Difficult People is the ultimate guide on how to face challenging employees and coworkers.

The extensive topics in this book deal with how to handle characters ranging from Bunglers to Backstabbers to Bullies. Few books on difficult employees, if any, offer such an extensive assortment of the characters you’re likely to encounter at work and how best to deal with them.

When faced with difficult employees, too often managers and coworkers lack the skills for handling the stressful encounters, so they throw up their hands in complete exasperation. Well, all that ends with this book. You’ll learn how to:

• Keep problem employees from setting the tone in the office.

• Take steps to turn troublemakers into team players.

• Keep them from demoralizing or scaring away other employees.

• Know when to cut your losses.

• Avoid hiring troublemakers in the first place.

• Confront bullies, harassers, and ageists.

• Keep a backstabber from sabotaging your career.

• Keep an aggressive colleague from commandeering your meeting.

• Deal with colleagues who infringe on your time.

Because the information in this book is so concise and practical, you’ll refer to it again and again. Whether you are a manager or a coworker of difficult employees, the advice will give you the tools to better supervise problem workers or the confidence to stand up to them. You will no longer live in fear of an aggressive employee ruining your day.

Carrie Mason-Draffen writes from a wealth of experience. For 10 years she has written an acclaimed workplace column for Newsday, a New York daily newspaper. 151 Quick Ideas to Deal With Difficult People draws on the insights she has gained from answering questions from hundreds of managers and employees. For additional information, the author interviewed outstanding experts in the legal and human-resource professions. Mason-Draffen lives on Long Island, New York, with her husband and three teenagers

Table of Contents

  1. Cover Page
  2. Title Page
  3. Copyright Page
  4. Contents
  5. How to Use This Book
  6. 1. Establish a Zero-Tolerance Policy
  7. 2. Don’t Let Difficult People Set the Tone for the Office.
  8. 3. Bone Up on Dealing With Difficult Employees
  9. 4. Don’t Wait for the Boston Tea Party
  10. 5. Be a Good Listener
  11. 6. Work Out a Solution Jointly
  12. 7. Follow Through on a Plan of Action
  13. 8. What Personality Trait Is at Play?
  14. 9. Make Sure the Employee Understands
  15. 10. Try Humor
  16. 11. Express Confidence That the Person Can Change
  17. 12. Thank Them for Their Cooperation
  18. 13. Master the Art of Difficult Conversations
  19. 14. Train Your Managers in the Art of Difficult Conversations
  20. 15. Don’t Promote Mediocrity
  21. 16. Seek Other Owners’ Advice
  22. 17. Reign in Difficult Family Members
  23. 18. Mean What You Say
  24. 19. Handling Resistance to Overtime
  25. 20. Dealing With Information Hoarders
  26. 21. Know When to Consult a Lawyer or Other Experts
  27. 22. Don’t Take Problem People Home
  28. 23. When an Employee Threatens Violence
  29. 24. Offer Bullies Options, Not Just Objections
  30. 25. Document Difficult Encounters
  31. 26. Monitor Phone Calls for Difficult Employees
  32. 27. Acknowledge Employees for Defusing Tense Situations
  33. 28. The Office Isn’t a Day Care
  34. 29. Use Irrational Requests as Conversational Openers
  35. 30. Hire Smart
  36. 31. Fire Smart
  37. 32. Encourage Employees to Tell You About Problem Colleagues
  38. 33. Don’t Be Afraid to Critique Problem Managers
  39. 34. When a Problem Employee Gives Notice
  40. 35. Establish a System for Filing Complaints
  41. 36. Set an Example
  42. 37. Encourage Managers to Communicate Problems Up the Chain
  43. 38. No Across-the-Board Reprimands
  44. 39. Don’t Parent a Difficult Employee
  45. 40. Audit Teams for Hot Spots
  46. 41. Remove a Team Member if Necessary
  47. 42. Mine the Exit Interviews
  48. 43. When Employees Resist Change
  49. 44. Nix Managers Gossip About Employees
  50. 45. The Greatest No-Shows on Earth
  51. 46. Is the Work Load Balanced?
  52. 47. Don’t Undercut Your Managers
  53. 48. Don’t Forget About Your Other Employees
  54. 49. Help! How to Find an Attorney
  55. 50. Refer to EAP
  56. 51. Give Yourself a Break
  57. 52. Put an End to Pilfering
  58. 53. Vary Your Tactics
  59. 54. Suggest Better Work Habits
  60. 55. Send Employees for More Training
  61. 56. No Knee-Jerk Reactions
  62. 57. Is the Affair Bad for Business?
  63. 58. Handling the Nasty End to Subordinates’ Romance
  64. 59. Addressing an Employee Who Won’t Dress the Part
  65. 60. A Wake-Up Call for Stragglers
  66. 61. Use an Evaluation as a Blueprint for Transforming Problem Employees
  67. 62. Call Employees on Inappropriate Computer and Internet Use
  68. 63. Nip Managers’ Favoritism in the Bud
  69. 64. Remove Abusive Managers
  70. 65. When Employees Ask to Borrow Money
  71. 66. Why an Apology Matters
  72. 67. Remind Employees of the Chain of Command
  73. 68. Demand Sensitivity Training
  74. 69. By the Way, “This Is Your Job”
  75. 70. Don’t Be Star Struck
  76. 71. Know When to Cut Your Losses
  77. 72. Discourage Workaholics
  78. 73. What’s in It for Me?
  79. 74. Ask Offenders for Self-Evaluation
  80. 75. Celebrate Transformations
  81. 76. Warding Off Harassers
  82. 77. Discourage Racist Jokes
  83. 78. Asking a Colleague to Clean Up His Cube
  84. 79. Don’t Take Disputes Personally
  85. 80. Talking to a Colleague About Faulty Hygiene
  86. 81. Try Role-Playing Before the Big Face-Off
  87. 82. Getting Colleagues to Respect Your Time
  88. 83. Don’t Throw Gas on the Fire
  89. 84. Don’t Let the P.D.s Get You Down
  90. 85. Find the Fault Line of the Fault-Finding Teammate
  91. 86. Know Your Workplace Rights
  92. 87. Confront Bullies on Your Own Terms
  93. 88. Establish Rules for Contentious Team Meetings
  94. 89. Outing the Backstabber
  95. 90. When a Colleague Refuses to Cooperate
  96. 91. Challenge the Chronic Complainer
  97. 92. The Cell Phone and What Ails Us
  98. 93. Keeping Delicate Phone Talks Private
  99. 94. Imagine Success
  100. 95. How to Handle a Surprise Milestone Party
  101. 96. Oh Lunch Most Foul!
  102. 97. Handling the Chronic Interrupter
  103. 98. Don’t Let an Aggressive Colleague Commandeer Your Meeting
  104. 99. Mind the Generational Gap
  105. 100. Discourage Eavesdropping
  106. 101. Extending a Helping Hand
  107. 102. Taming the Green-Eyed Monster
  108. 103. Make Sure the Boss Knows Your Side of the Story
  109. 104. Recovering From a Fall
  110. 105. Empower Yourself
  111. 106. Seek a Colleague’s Advice
  112. 107. Ask for Backup
  113. 108. Temper Criticism With Praise
  114. 109. Reject Offensive E-mails
  115. 110. Change Your Location if You Have To
  116. 111. Meet the Office Recluse
  117. 112. Pick Your Battles
  118. 113. Have Grudge, Will Travel
  119. 114. When to Take Legal Action
  120. 115. Restoring Trust
  121. 116. Develop Coping Rituals
  122. 117. Beware the False Confidant
  123. 118. Become a Leader of One
  124. 119. Insist on Respect
  125. 120. Become a Peer Mediator
  126. 121. When a Colleague Won’t Pay Up
  127. 122. Have Fun Despite the Naysayers
  128. 123. Beware the “Mind Reader”
  129. 124. Prep for a Meeting With the Boss
  130. 125. Flu Rage
  131. 126. Beware the Manipulator
  132. 127. The Art of the Riposte
  133. 128. Red Alert: A Colleague Belittles You in Front of the Boss
  134. 129. Oh Perfection Most Foul
  135. 130. Play to Their Strengths
  136. 131. Ouch! The Supersensitive Colleague
  137. 132. When You’re Asked to Clean Up a Colleague’s Report
  138. 133. Listen Up
  139. 134. Where’s My Stapler?
  140. 135. Admit When You’re Wrong
  141. 136. You’re Not Alone
  142. 137. Beware the Minimizers
  143. 138. Focus on the Good
  144. 139. When a Foe Asks for a Favor
  145. 140. Handling the Over -indulger
  146. 141. Asking a Fellow Manager to Respect Your Subordinates
  147. 142. The Disappearing Colleague
  148. 143. When a Problem Employee Becomes Your Boss
  149. 144. Demand Reciprocity
  150. 145. The Rosebush Cometh
  151. 146. Just Say No to the Office Peddler
  152. 147. You’re the Boss Now
  153. 148. If the Boss Asks, Give an Honest Assessment of a Colleague
  154. 149. If You Must, Avoid Contentious Topics
  155. 150. Assemble an Emotional First-Aid Kit
  156. 151. When the Best Strategy Is to Move On
  157. Index
  158. About the Author