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DEALING WITH DIFFICULT PEOPLE or DON’T YOU JUST LOVE THIS JOB???. Karen B. Gokay , Esq. Director of Human Resources & Public Relations Berks County Intermediate Unit -------------------------------------------------------------------------- Presentation for: 2010 PASBO CONFERENCE

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dealing with difficult people or don t you just love this job

DEALING WITH DIFFICULT PEOPLEorDON’T YOU JUST LOVE THIS JOB???

Karen B. Gokay, Esq.

Director of Human Resources & Public Relations

Berks County Intermediate Unit

--------------------------------------------------------------------------

Presentation for:

2010 PASBO CONFERENCE

March 11, 2010

seminar objectives
SEMINAR OBJECTIVES
  • Identifying Supervisory Traits/Responsibilities
  • Identifying the Traits of Some “Problem Employees”
  • Identifying Supervisory Strategies to Deal with these Employee Types
  • Tips for De-escalating Conflict
qualities of a successful supervisor
QUALITIES OF A SUCCESSFUL SUPERVISOR
  • Perceptive
  • Good Listener
  • Encourager
    • Do not motivate by guilt or force
  • Assertive
    • Constructive; truthful; frank
  • Decisive
    • Making those difficult decisions without alienating others
some general tricks to successful personnel management
Some “General Tricks” to Successful Personnel Management
  • Recognize your role/responsibility/authority
  • Recognize the styles/roles of others
  • Determine how to effectively utilize the talents at hand
  • Adhere to supervisory guidelines, policies & procedures
  • Hold individuals accountable
  • Handle problems/issues when they arise
  • Render decisions utilizing your discretion as appropriate
  • Keep Administration informed
effective employee relations
Effective Employee Relations
  • Honest Two-Way Communication
  • A Culture of Honesty, Fairness & Trust
  • Sensitivity to Employee Issues
  • Clearly Articulated Expectations
  • Consistency in Policy Administration
  • Regular and Constructive Feedback
  • Support/Encouragement
handling conflict
HANDLING CONFLICT

What is Your Responsibility?

Putting an end to the behavior that is disruptive so that the tasks and goals of the department can be accomplished.

problem employees
PROBLEMEMPLOYEES

Why?

  • Poor Employee Relations
  • A Perception They are Not Appreciated
  • Insecurity
    • Positive Reinforcement Needed
    • Desire More Attention
  • Personal Issues Unrelated to Work
  • Nature of Their Personality
the complainer
THE COMPLAINER
  • Personality Traits:
    • Lots of complaints
    • Imagines problems
    • Appears innocent
    • Provides no solutions; just problems
    • Gets worse if ignored
the complainer1
THE COMPLAINER
  • Supervisory Strategies:
    • Listen
    • Don’t agree or disagree
    • Investigate
      • Ask specific questions
      • Insist on facts
    • Limit discussion to job-related complaints
    • Take appropriate action
the underminer
THE UNDERMINER
  • Personality Traits:
    • Wants to move up in the organization
    • Undermines supervisor; attempts to make him/her look foolish
    • Extremely passive-aggressive
    • Friendly to your face; consistently stabs you in the back, though
the underminer1
THE UNDERMINER
  • Supervisory Strategies:
    • Inform him/her that you know what is going on
    • Do not allow idle time; keep him/her busy
    • Establish necessary limits regarding behavior
    • Take appropriate action
the aggressor
THE AGGRESSOR
  • Personality Traits:
    • Bullies others to achieve results
    • Embarrasses co-workers
    • Throws temper tantrums
    • Attempts to make supervisor feel inadequate
the aggressor1
THE AGGRESSOR
  • Supervisory Strategies:
    • Utilize self-control in all interactions
    • Establish a set time to deal with employee
    • Consider having witnesses available
    • Anticipate challenges to your authority
    • Deal upfront with accusations
    • Take appropriate action
the busybody
THE “BUSYBODY”
  • Personality Traits:
    • Professional meddler
    • “Knows Everything”
      • (Not really, though)
    • Likes to “drop in” to gossip
the busybody1
THE “BUSYBODY”
  • Supervisory Strategies:
    • Meet with him/her privately and explain the negative impact of the gossip on the team
    • Do not allow idle time; keep him/her busy
    • Focus on the problem created by the gossip; not the nature of the gossip
    • Take appropriate action
the perfectionist
THE PERFECTIONIST
  • Personality Traits:
    • Avoids, or desires to avoid, mistakes at any cost
    • Loses hope when things go wrong; can become negative & overwhelmed
    • May push deadlines to the limit or miss the same
    • Can become short-tempered with “less than perfect” employees
the perfectionist1
THE PERFECTIONIST
  • Supervisory Strategies:
    • Employ patience; not contempt
    • Acknowledge the desire for perfection but remind employee that perfection is often “in the eyes of the beholder”
    • Maintain expectations regarding deadlines
    • Do not allow “negativity” to prevail
mini me
“MINI-ME”
  • Personality Traits:
    • Wants a supervisory position
    • Feels his/her way is the best way to accomplish an objective
    • Often “instructs” others as to how things should be done
    • Cannot be objective
mini me1
“MINI-ME”
  • Supervisory Strategies:
    • Remind employee YOU are the supervisor
    • Impress upon him/her that there is not just one way to do something
    • Explain behavior is counterproductive and bordering on unacceptable harassment
    • Take appropriate action
the jealous employee
THE JEALOUS EMPLOYEE
  • Personality Traits:
    • Possesses an “entitlement” mentality
    • Reacts with spite when others are promoted or receive raises
    • Complains of unfair treatment
the jealous employee1
THE JEALOUS EMPLOYEE
  • Supervisory Strategies:
    • Do not enter into a discussion about others
    • Explain that everyone is evaluated or assessed according to their own efforts
    • Avoid being dragged into an argument
    • Provide employee with suggestions for professional development, if applicable
    • Take appropriate action, if necessary
communicating with problem employees
COMMUNICATING WITH PROBLEM EMPLOYEES
  • Maintain eye contact
  • Watch the tone of your voice
  • Time discussion appropriately
    • Behind closed doors
    • “After the dust has settled”
  • Discuss impact of concern
    • On the organization, co-workers, career
tips for de escalating conflict
TIPS FOR DE-ESCALATING CONFLICT
  • Speak softly
  • Speak slowly
  • Make direct eye contact
  • Be conscious of body language
  • Search for the “win-win”
  • Take a break, if needed
tips for de escalating conflict1
TIPS FOR DE-ESCALATING CONFLICT
  • Avoid starting sentences with the pronoun “You”
  • Repeat messages and clarify often
  • Watch your language
  • Acknowledge the position and needs of the person involved
  • Ask open-ended questions
  • Breathe!!!!
closing thoughts
CLOSING THOUGHTS
  • Taking on a supervisory role requires one to deal effectively with people
  • It is a small percentage of employees who will create the biggest headaches
  • Don’t forget to acknowledge the “problem-free” employees
  • Recognize that you will make mistakes; learn from them
  • Questions??
contact information
CONTACT INFORMATION

Karen B. Gokay, Esq.

Director of Human Resources & Public Relations

610.987.8470

kargok@berksiu.org