Three Difficult Personalities That Will Stifle Your Productivity


Three Difficult Personalities That Will Stifle Your Productivity

Dealing with difficult personalities can not only take a toll on your health and well-being, but it can also severely dampen your productivity. This goes for all kinds of relationships and situations: business partners, employees, and even your social circles.

Whether you like it or not, if you are going to be in business then you are going to have to deal with people - some of those people will be a pleasure to work with, others won't be. But, how you choose to navigate these relationships can really make the difference between success and failure.

If you want to be on the successful side, then you first have to realize that every person (including you!) has his or her own personality style and preferences, habits and quirks, strengths and weaknesses. When you are engaged in bringing on business partners, team building, or filling key management positions, your goal should be training yourself to focus on and harness the strengths of others while downplaying their weaknesses. By doing so, you and those around you will be a whole lot happier and much more productive.

When Difficult Becomes Damaging

But sometimes a person's personality is so difficult that it poisons any relationship he or she may have. Here are three common toxic personalities that will destroy your productivity, derail your team building efforts and ultimately compromise the management of your business if you don't actively move to prevent it.

I'll show you how to handle each one:

The Narcissist.  These are the self-promoters who continually crave attention; it's always all about them. Being a little egotistical is okay, but these people are so extreme that they can't see anyone else but themselves, and in the process, they are constantly trampling on the needs, wants, and sensitivities of those around them. Rarely do they apologize, or even acknowledge, their mistakes, bad decisions, or poor performance, and if something goes wrong, they quickly shift the blame away from themselves and onto others.

When dealing with a narcissist, don't try to change their worldview head on. Instead, enter it. Try to show these people how the desired behavior or outcome will benefit them. Also, make it a point to give deserved praise in a public way.

The Passive-Aggressive Manipulator. Passive-aggressive people can create a toxic environment and even sabotage the positive work that's getting done, but they are not so easy to spot because they are masters at hiding their true feelings. On the outside, they appear calm and content, but on the inside, they may be seething. Instead of clearly communicating their distress, they don't do their jobs well or fully, they may make off-hand sarcastic comments that are insulting or belittling, and they may stealthily try to take revenge.  

Don't fall into the trap of reciprocating their behavior. Instead, you should try to bring up any issues directly. You can do this by first expressing interest in their true feelings and creating a safe space for them to feel heard and validated. After this, you can talk about the negative impact their behavior is having on those around them.

The Bully. Bullying doesn't just happen in at school. Incidents of intimidation and aggression in the workplace need to be stamped out as soon as you notice them. Making belittling comments, yelling, threatening, domineering, and taking undeserved credit for the work of others, has no place in a responsible business.

For these people, the first thing you need to do is set very clear boundaries regarding what is acceptable behavior and what is not, and since bullying is often a cover-up for insecurity, make it a point to reward and praise any positive behavior.

Though relationships are important when you are trying to develop and grow a business, you want those relationships to be positive and balanced. Whenever a relationship isn't that way, then you owe it to yourself and your business to either cut ties or make an effort to bring things back to centre.