I’m not sure why, but I find most things easier to deal with when I can put a name to them.
It doesn’t have anything to do with medication, either.
However, it does have a lot to do with determining the appropriate response. When you know that horrible soreness in your throat is strep throat, you also know what you should do to take care of it.
I’ve listed a number of difficult personality types we all might encounter at work, with the idea that sticking a label on them will give us all a heads-up on how to deal with these pesky co-workers.
Say you just stopped by the break room to get a cup of coffee and you suddenly find yourself ensnared in a tedious conversation. Try figuring out which of the top four difficult personality types best describes your colleague, and see what happens.
One of the first benefits you’ll enjoy is the realization that the problem isn’t yours, it’s your colleague’s.
Secondly, you’ll be distanced enough from the situation to think of strategic ways to actually remove yourself.
Do these types sound familiar?
The Downer – According to him, nothing is ever going to work, new ideas are bound to fail and the sky should be coming down any minute now. Don’t try to argue with him or change his mind. Just remember this — although he may have a point now and again, he is not necessarily right.
The Climber – She’s on her way to the top, and that’s all that matters. If she is essentially honest you can work with her reasonably well, because a job well done helps everyone. Just make sure you get the credit you deserve. If she’s unscrupulous, be very, very careful at all times. Documentation is your friend.
The Drama Queen – Some people seem to live at a higher emotional pitch than others, and they can come in either gender. They don’t usually respond well when you tell them to calm down. A better approach is to do a rational walk-through of their crisis of the moment, defusing trigger points as you go.
The Gossip – Handle this one with care. One the one hand, you don’t want to get dragged into a web of snark. But on the other hand, act too aloof and the snark could be about you. Since gossip is a fundamentally immature behavior, one of the best ways to get out of The Gossip’s clutches is to do what works with toddlers – distraction. Move the conversation in a different direction and then make your escape.
These are only the top four offenders I’ve run into. What kinds of personality tropes do you find the most problematic?
by Danielle Dresden