How to deal with difficult people How to deal with difficult people

The only organisation with no difficult people in it is the one with no people in it. And then there are all the people outside it – customers, suppliers, service-users, critics, ex-employees and so on. There are those that can safely be ignored, and then there’s everyone else: people with whom you have to establish some kind of modus vivendi if you and the organisation are to achieve your goals.

It’s no good hoping that people will change automatically, or that you can impose your will. Some active skill is needed. And learning how to deal with difficult people can prevent the prospect of deadlock or worse.

There are all kinds of things that make people difficult, many of them rooted deep in their personalities. But the behaviours that make them unpleasant, unmanageable or unhelpful are not immutable. When you come up against people who talk over you; who don’t listen; who exclude you and your ideas; who – in Huthwaite terms – ‘Low React’; who are defensive and/or aggressive in their speech, there are many traps you can fall into that only make matters worse.

Research shows us where these traps are, how to avoid them, and what behaviours people can use to deal with difficult people which will bring about a far better outcome. The Huthwaite module; How to Deal with Difficult People, builds on the bedrock of Huthwaite Verbal Behaviour Analysis. It doesn’t promise to turn Joseph Stalin into St Francis of Assisi. It just shows you how you can work with what you’ve got to make everyone’s lives easier.