PRECIOUS PEOPLE IN THE OFFICE
We all know these people – they always ask for your advice but never seem to follow through, they find fault in everything about their lives and rarely is anything to their liking. Addressing their impact not only matters to your own sanity but often to that of the people around you, too, says Karen Gately, founder of HR consultancy Ryan Gately. As tempting as it may be to simply ignore those who constantly complain or overreact, the only real way to deal with it is to confront them. Here, Gately gives her four strategies for handling precious people...
First, remember it’s completely reasonable to expect people to take responsibility for how they think, feel and behave – including when times are not to their liking – and how that behaviour negatively affects the people around them. People who take ownership for themselves look for ways they can change, but those who don’t blame others for what makes them unhappy.
listen to understand
Sensitive people like to feel heard and understood. By hearing them out, you’ll earn their trust and, in turn, be in a position to influence them. You’ll need to be empathetic for how they think and feel, and also speak with them in a calm tone. Understanding precious people will give you a much better chance of challenging the beliefs fuelling their concerns.
show tough love
Have an honest discussion with the person about the impact that their behaviour has not only on you and other people in the office, but also on their own reality. Be both upfront and sensitive in your approach. Encourage them to speak out about any concerns that are going through their mind before they get blown out of proportion.
continue to challenge
If they continue to overreact, keep calling them out on it (respectfully, of course). Point out when emotional responses such as crying, arguing or complaining are making it hard for them to maintain perspective and, ultimately, undermining their ability to succeed. Challenge them to choose more productive thoughts and emotions.