Dealing with Difficult People

Nov 28, 2023 | Communication

We have all had to work with difficult people, and transparently, we’ve all probably been them at some point for someone else. In life, we all encounter people that just rub us the wrong way, tweak us in some way, and we just generally do not vibe well with. Yet, we still must work with them or interact with them on some level. So, what can you do? 

Below are some ways to navigate conversations with difficult people while maintaining respect and open dialogue:

  • Keep your composure and approach the conversation calmly, even in the face of opposition. Taking a deep breath and maintaining emotional balance can help defuse tense situations and encourage a more rational and productive exchange of ideas.
  • Strive to understand the perspectives and motivations of the other person. Using empathy can help create a shared understanding, fostering a more respectful conversation.
  • Listen to their concerns and reflect back what they have said to ensure you comprehend their perspective, even if you don’t necessarily agree with it. Acknowledging what someone else is saying goes a long to creating a respectful environment for a productive exchange. Try to share solutions and find common ground. It’s okay to agree to disagree. 
  • Identify and confirm common goals or shared interests to ensure mutual understanding and to build a foundation for constructive dialogue. Highlighting areas of agreement and common ground provides unity and a better ground for collaboration in a more amicable atmosphere.
  • Establish respectful boundaries to ensure that the conversation remains civil and productive. Address any disrespectful behavior assertively but politely, emphasizing the importance of maintaining a respectful and professional discourse.

By mastering the art of civil discourse, you can navigate challenging conversations with grace and dignity, fostering understanding and collaboration even in the face of disagreement. 

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Paul Bramson

Paul Bramson

Paul Bramson is renowned as a powerhouse on keynote stages and in training arenas. He is widely regarded as being one of the most impactful speakers, trainers and C-suite coaches in the world today. Paul is recognized as a leading authority and thought leader in the areas of communication, leadership and sales boasting media mentions in Forbes, Fast Company, Fortune, BuiltIn, Yahoo, and MSN. With an extensive 25-year tenure, Paul has continually ignited and empowered professionals, leaders, and teams across all echelons. His ability to captivate and engage audiences originates from an authentic zeal, unique aptitudes, and an unyielding dedication to professional and personal enhancement.