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  • feedwordpress 16:28:55 on 2018/08/02 Permalink
    Tags: Difficult People, , ,   

    Creating A Friendly Work Atmosphere 

    Create a Friendly and Approachable Atmosphere

    In our fast-paced world, people are becoming detached and desensitized. We are more transaction-based, unfocused on how our interaction is affecting other people. When you have that style of interaction with others, the world becomes decidedly colder. You must be aware of when that happens and take the steps necessary to turn it around:

    • Your body language and facial expressions provide visual clues, whether you intend them to or not. You need to be aware of messages you might be sending that you don’t want to send. You should not assume you are communicating what you think you are! You must be open to inventorying your communication style and be aware of cultural diversities that could work for, or against, you.
    • It is important to be genuinely interested when a person is communicating with you. Stopping, listening, and asking questions demonstrates your interest.
    • Assess what kind of environment you work in. Do you post a warning sign that states, “Stop. I am in a bad mood,” when you are having a rough day? Some assistants will say that is exactly the message they want to send. However, even when you are in a bad mood, which is very possible, you want to be very cautious of the message you send to peers or your manager. Sending this message is not conducive to controlling your attitude or choosing what attitude to wear each day.
    • What kinds of things do you surround yourself with that make you look unapproachable? (Your job is to support people whether you want to be bothered or not.)

    Come In with Zeal, Leave with Zen

    You go to work with zeal, having a mindset that you will conquer the day. Then you get into the office and find it is like a zoo.

    You want to leave with Zen, so you approach work by being excited about what you are doing. You approach your work with a good attitude, no matter what happens!

    You find that your work improves, and as that happens, you feel good about what you are accomplishing and how the work is moving forward.

    You are now adding value every day, and it isn’t dependent upon everything at work being perfect. You are managing your attitude (in spite of the zoo!) and so, when it’s time to go, you leave with a Zen-like peacefulness, knowing you cannot be moved by what’s happening around you.

    You form your own emotional “environment,” and in so doing, you work better and have more peacefulness. That’s how you come in with zeal and leave with Zen.

     

    This excerpt is from the book, Who Took My Pen…Again? by Joan Burge. This is available for purchase at the Office Dynamics Success Store.

    The post Creating A Friendly Work Atmosphere appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
  • feedwordpress 20:42:18 on 2018/06/08 Permalink
    Tags: , , , , Difficult People, ,   

    When is it too soon—or too late—to thwart bullying? 

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    Each month we feature a question from our friends at Business Management Daily’s Admin Pro Forum. Please enjoy engaging in a conversation about this month’s question.

    Question: “I’ve told myself that if my boss takes a very bullying tone to me again, I’ll speak up about it. But in the heat of the moment, I tend to weaken and not defend myself from it. If I confront him directly, should I come back to his office sometime after it’s over and we’ve both settled down, or deal with the issue right away and risk an escalating argument? Should I report his actions to someone immediately after it happens, or should I wait till I cool down so I get a better perspective and have notes? It’s not so much a question of if I try to put an end to what I think is bullying; it’s when.” – Anonymous Admin

    Feel free to leave your response below!

     

    training_program_for_administrative_assistants

    “Of all the programs offered by other training companies that I’ve attended, World Class Assistant™ was much more comprehensive and intense. This program is head and shoulders above the rest!” – Jennie

    The post When is it too soon—or too late—to thwart bullying? appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
  • feedwordpress 20:00:19 on 2018/05/01 Permalink
    Tags: , Difficult People, , , , , ,   

    Before You Retaliate 

    before_you_retaliate

    Before you retaliate

    It’s almost instinctive to yell back or to be offended at someone who is yelling at you—be it a co-worker or a manager. But yelling back or arguing accomplishes little. It can destroy a business relationship and certainly dims your professional image. So before you respond to a verbal attack, keep these things in mind.

    • Figure out what’s really going on. In each of the following cases, compassion—not retaliation—is in order.
    • Every one is liable to blow up during a rough day at work. If the person yelling at you isn’t known as a chronic jerk, then consider that the source of the blow-up could stem other reasons and not personal.
    • Consider that some people are just socially inept and know no other way to communicate.
    • Then, there are some people who crave the attention and know that yelling or being aggressive is one way to get it.
    • Listen before you leap to conclusions. Assume first that what a person is saying is true. More often than not, we tend to start making a list of what’s wrong with a person and miss the opportunity to really find out what’s at issue. At that point, no one is listening to what the other is saying.
    • Stay neutral. Instead of adding fuel to the argument by yelling back, deflect the hostilities. Don’t walk away. Instead, demonstrate a neutral position. Answer in a calm, steady voice or give an inane answer. It usually stops an argument cold.
    • And don’t handle this via email. Take advantage of a Human Moment.

    Forgiving is not forgetting; it’s letting of go of anger and hurt and moving on. Take time. It’s not easy to forgive with both your head and heart.

    – Joan Burge

    The post Before You Retaliate appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
  • feedwordpress 09:27:11 on 2017/11/09 Permalink
    Tags: , aggressive, , , , , , , Difficult People, passive, , , workplace communication,   

    7 Tips for Executive Assistants Who Want To Be More Assertive 

    Assertive_vs_Aggressive_Communication

    Do you want to be more assertive?

    Learning how to tactfully voice your opinions and assert your needs as an executive assistant is important. Many assistants have crossed the line from assertive to aggressive. So what is the difference between assertive and aggressive? Isn’t being aggressive good?

    Many people confuse assertive and aggressive behavior. This is especially true of women, who until recent years, were often taught to associate passiveness with femininity. As a result women often are reluctant to take the initiative in the workplace – whether to resolve a conflict, solve a problem, or present an idea—for fear of being labeled pushy or obnoxious. 97% of administrative professionals are female.

    What’s the difference between being assertive and aggressive?

    Before I go on, let me clarify the differences between passive, aggressive and assertive. By explaining the 3 of these, it will help you better understand the differences.

    Passive: A passive person only cares about others and what they think and making sure everyone else’s needs are met. You might be thinking, “Isn’t that a good thing?” No. Not when we sacrifice ourselves or what we need to get done for the sake of others. Passive people can become resentful or blow up later, which then becomes aggressiveness.

    Aggressive: An aggressive person only cares about themselves; therefore, they don’t care what they say or how they say it as long as they get what they want.

    Assertive: An assertive person cares that their own needs are met AND cares about others. So they think about how they will communicate in a caring way and get what they need.

    We all have needs to be met in the workplace so we can do our job and finish projects on time. We also have to make sure people do not walk all over us or be a cupcake! Assertiveness is the way to go because it is the happy medium. You care about yourself and your care about others.

    Benefits of Being Assertive

    • Reduces anxiety.
    • Provides a feeling of control.
    • Increases self-esteem.
    • Builds confidence.
    • We get resolution of the situation.
    • Less stress and wasted time.
    • You choose when to push a situation or not.
    • Protects you from being taken advantage of.

    We all know the famous Mayo Clinic. Here is what the Mayo Clinic has to say about being assertive. “Being assertive is typically viewed as a healthier communication style. Being assertive offers many benefits. It helps you keep people from walking all over you. On the flip side, it can also help you from steamrolling others.”

    Risk is Involved
    Being assertive involves some risk because you aren’t guaranteed of the outcome. You have to be willing to take a chance, knowing the situation may not turn out like you hope it will. However, you have a better chance of having your needs met with assertive action than by being passive or aggressive.

    When communicating assertively, it’s a good idea to start at the end—what you want to see happen and then work back. Make sure you clearly communicate your needs or desires. When these are communicated in a direct, tactful manner, you most likely will see the result you expected in the beginning.

    Weigh the Pros And Cons
    If you are doubtful as to whether to assert yourself in a particular situation, you should weigh the pros and cons. It is not the number of pros vs. cons that is as important as the impact of each pro and con.

    7 Steps to Be More Assertive

    1. Outwardly confront something instead of holding it in or stewing over it. Passive people hold things in. They keep their feelings buried and do not like confrontation. Therefore, they are walked over and stressed out. While you may want to take some time to think about the situation and how you want to respond, do not sit on it for days and weeks. In fact, the sooner you confront a situation or something someone said to you, the better. Just choose your words carefully.
    2. State their opinions clearly. You are entitled to your opinion. We are not clones of each other. When communicating with others take time to be clear when expressing your opinions and especially do not say anything that would hurt another person’s feelings.
    3. Walk away at your choosing. Passive people walk away because they feel intimated by a person or the situation. An assertive person walks away because “it’s” just not worth their time or energy.
    4. Are active, not reactive. Assertive people take action but they also stop and think before they take action. Again, they craft the message they want to deliver so the other person will be open to what they say.
    5. Establish deadlines. You can start this today! Many executive and administrative assistants will ask, “When do you need this?” Of course, the common answer is, “As soon as you can get it to me?” Or, “As soon as possible.” Learn to ask people, “By when do you need this?” Get the people who assign you tasks or special projects to commit to the latest date by which they need something, not the soonest. This helps the person giving you the assignment set their own priorities and helps you prioritize your workload.
    6. Do not accept inappropriate behavior. If there is anything that does not feel right or appropriate to you in the workplace, you must tell the offending person their action or words are not acceptable to you. A very simple example for assistants is the person who always comes into the assistant’s workspace and takes pencils or pens or whatever. If you don’t like that, then say something. That is a very simple example. My point is you do not have to accept behaviors that make you frustrated, stressed, or uncomfortable. My favorite saying is, “People will continue to treat you as you allow them to.”
    7. Go to the source. People have a tendency to complain to their friends or co-workers about someone at work who upset them or who they don’t like. That does not change the situation or how you feel—at least not permanently. When something arises with another person, you need to go directly to the source. Again, use positive communication skills. If you hear something via third party, make sure you have all your facts before going to the source.

    “We are learning to find a balance between being too passive and/or too aggressive, instead, learning to be assertive when presenting ideas and/or suggestions.” – World Class Assistant Part 1 Graduates (For more wisdom from these class participants check out the slideshare below by my World Class students.

    Joan Burge

    Benefits of Attending the World Class Assistant Certificate Program (as shared by course participants)

     

    Find More Information About World Class Assistant Training

    The post 7 Tips for Executive Assistants Who Want To Be More Assertive appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
  • feedwordpress 16:00:03 on 2017/09/07 Permalink
    Tags: , , Difficult People,   

    Navigate Controversial Topics In The Workplace 

    Imagine this scenario: You wander into the break room at lunch time to heat up your leftovers and perhaps grab a few minutes with a book or on social media. And then you overhear two co-workers, their voices rising a bit, talking about a controversial subject of the day, or week, or year.

    It happens, right? There’s no avoiding people with different points of view, and some of those people don’t have good boundaries when it comes to sharing those viewpoints with others at work—regardless of differing beliefs. So how do you eat your lunch and not make enemies at the same time when those situations arise?

    Well, for starters, your workplace should and can be the guide. If your workplace rules prohibit certain things, then you should follow those guidelines. You can also decide not to engage in those topics, or even try to best gauge your audience before you share any details. What other steps should you take? This graphic can help you navigate controversial topics in the workplace.

    conference_for_administrative_professionals

    The post Navigate Controversial Topics In The Workplace appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
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