In a perfect world, each of your employees would get along and treat one another with the utmost respect. Unfortunately, it doesn’t always work that way. Some people are just plain difficult, which can cause a major rift at your company. If your office is filled with tension caused by a trying team member, you need to take action. Regardless of how unpleasant a person is, you’re still their boss and it’s your responsibility to manage them.
5 Tips for Handling Difficult Employees
Not sure what to do with a problematic team member? Use these five tips to get the issue under control:
Gather the Facts
Offices are often filled with gossip and greatly exaggerated stories, so conduct research to witness the situation on your own. You don’t want to risk accusing an employee of something they didn’t actually do.
Confront the Person
Address the problem as soon as you’ve seen their negative behavior firsthand, as ignoring it will only make things worse. Be sure to have the conversation in private, as doing so in front of others is bound to put the employee on the defensive.
Show Some Compassion
No matter how unhappy you are about the person’s negative behavior, verbally attacking them will do more harm than good. You never know what’s going on in their lives that is causing them to act out. Get to the root of the problem, so you can see things from their perspective.
Offer Tips for Improvement
There’s a good chance the person is aware they’re not too popular with many of your other team members, but may not know how to turn things around. Help them learn how to act appropriately in the office by mentoring them on more suitable workplace behaviors.
Terminate their Employment
If you feel like you’ve tried everything and nothing is producing the results you need, it may be necessary to terminate the person’s employment. You can’t keep someone on your team who constantly disrespects you and their peers. As the boss it’s your job to provide everyone with a positive work environment.
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