dealing with difficult people training
dealing with difficult people and situations
dealing with difficult people training
dealing with difficult people and situations
dealing with difficult people
How often do we deal with difficult people or demanding situations? Sometimes it’s not the people that are difficult. For example, a customer can have a legitimate but challenging complaint. But the difficulty can also come from behaviours of others, such as making personal attacks, raising voices, hurling abuse, or worse, threatening with physical violence.
This course will build the emotional intelligence to stay calm during difficult situations. Participants will gain the skills to de-escalate conflict and set boundaries.
- People who deal with conflict situations in their work
- Full day training course. Half-day or shorter course options available
- Run for groups of your organisation at your offices or in a virtual classroom
training goals are to:
- understand the reasons for difficult behaviours
- stay calm and composed in challenging situations
- show empathy through active listening skills
- defuse tense and emotional situations with EQ
- set clear boundaries and know what to do if the boundaries are crossed
- respond to complaints and criticism
introduction to dealing with difficult customers and peopleThe facilitator will provide an overview of the course content and review participants’ objectives for the workshop. This section will also explore the conflict situations in which the group participants find themselves. During the workshop, participants will use their own experiences as case studies and topics for discussion.
why?The group will look at the many factors that can contribute to difficult situations and behaviours. It is important to be able to recognise the underlying reasons for people’s behaviours and empathise. These are important aspects of emotional intelligence.
listen with empathySome people confuse sympathy with empathy. In this segment, the group will learn to distinguish the two and listen with empathy. They will practise using nonverbal cues and paraphrasing to show the customer or other person that they understand their concerns and take them seriously.
dealing with your own emotionsIt is tough to keep your cool under stress, especially when you face unreasonable, abusive or aggressive people. But you need to remain calm and composed in challenging situations. Participants will learn the emotional intelligence skills to recognise and regulate their own emotions and thereby creating a calming effect on others.
de-escalating conflictDifficult situations can sometimes escalate into conflict. This section will cover strategies for defusing tension and de-escalate conflict, which are key emotional intelligence skills. Participants will learn to empathise and find ways to resolve the issue in a way that is satisfactory for both parties.
complaints and criticismComplaints are never fun to deal with but it is even harder when the complainer is unreasonable or is personally attacking you. Participants will explore how to respond to complaints and learn strategies to deal with criticism. The listening with empathy skills from earlier in the course come in handy and participants will discuss the importance of taking responsibility for issues and how to create the mindset to develop solutions. They will also build the skills and resilience to not take issues personally and make sure they don’t take the heightened emotions home.
to here and no further!In difficult situations, customers or others may behave in unacceptable or unreasonable ways. To manage this, we need to have the emotional intelligence skills to communicate assertively. We must set and communicate appropriate boundaries. We need to be able to say ‘no’ in a non-threatening and empathetic way and we don’t want to escalate anger. In this section participants will practise using ‘I statements’ and establishing clear limits.
lean on each otherDealing with difficult people is tough for most of us. A good way to manage your challenges is to seek support from colleagues or managers. Participants will explore the ways they can seek support and cope with difficult situations.
making it countThis final section will review key takeaways from the course and provide an opportunity for participants to set goals for continuing to improve their EQ skills in dealing with difficult people and customers. Participants will leave the course with a plan for how to apply what they have learned and how they can continue developing their skills.
Dealing with difficult or emotional customers can be a challenge for anyone, but having strong emotional intelligence skills can make a big difference in how you handle these interactions. In the context of customer interactions, emotional intelligence can be especially important for a few reasons.
First of all, being able to manage your own emotions effectively is crucial when it comes to dealing with difficult or emotional customers. You’ll be better able to think clearly and respond in a way that resolves the issue when you’re able to stay calm and composed, even in challenging situations. On the other hand, when you get flustered or upset, it’s more likely that the situation will escalate. Emotional intelligence allows you to recognise and regulate your own emotions, which can be a powerful tool for maintaining your cool.
In addition to managing your own emotions, being attuned to the emotions of your customers, or others, can also be an important aspect of effective communication in situations of conflict. If you’re able to recognise how they’re feeling and understand their perspective, you’ll be better equipped to respond in a way that addresses their concerns and helps to resolve the issue. For example, if a customer is upset and expressing frustration, being able to show empathy and understanding can go a long way towards defusing the situation.
Overall, emotional intelligence is a valuable asset when it comes to dealing with difficult or emotional interactions. It allows you to manage your own emotions effectively, recognise and understand the emotions of others, and use this awareness to communicate more effectively and resolve issues in a positive way. So next time you’re faced with a difficult customer, remember to tap into your emotional intelligence skills to help you navigate the situation.
Dealing with difficult people can be a challenging aspect of life, whether it be in the workplace or in personal relationships. It’s important to understand that difficult behaviour is often a result of underlying issues and it’s important to approach these situations with empathy and understanding. We will explore some strategies for dealing with difficult people and provide examples of how they can be applied in real-life situations.
First, it’s important to stay calm and composed when dealing with difficult people. This can be challenging, but it’s important to remember that getting caught up in an argument or becoming defensive will only escalate the situation. One way to stay calm is to take a few deep breaths before responding. Another way is to use empathy statements.
For example, let’s say you’re a customer service representative and a customer is becoming increasingly angry and aggressive on the phone. Instead of getting defensive, stay calm by taking a deep breath and show that you understand their frustration and you are willing to help. For example, you can say, ‘I understand it is disappointing your expectations haven’t been met’, which you can follow with ‘Let’s see how I can help fix this for you’.
When using empathy statements, using the words ‘I’ (not ‘we’) and ‘you’ is helpful. It shows to others that you are involved personally. For example, you can show empathy by saying something like ‘I’m sorry about your experience’, or ‘I understand how frustrating that must be’, or ‘I realise the difficulties that must have created for you.’ You show that you are interested in the other person and how the situation impacts them.
When dealing with difficult situations, make sure you understand the issue. Therefore, a key strategy for dealing with difficult people is active listening. This means really paying attention to what the person is saying and acknowledging their feelings. One way to do this is when you’re dealing with someone in person, is by using nonverbal cues, such as nodding and making eye contact, to show that you’re listening. Another way is to paraphrase what the person has said to show that you understand their perspective.
For example, let’s say a colleague is upset and venting to you about a problem they’re having with a project where their contributions in a meeting were cut short. Instead of interrupting or dismissing their concerns, you can actively listen by nodding and making eye contact, and paraphrasing, or repeating in different words, what they’ve said to show that you understand their perspective. An example is saying, ‘That must be disappointing when you have invested so much time in preparing for the meeting”.
Responding to complaints and criticism is another important aspect of dealing with difficult people. When someone is complaining or criticising, it’s important to show empathy and understanding of their perspective. It’s also important to find a way to address the concern in a helpful and constructive manner.
For example, let’s say a customer is complaining about a product they’ve received. Instead of getting defensive, you can show empathy by acknowledging their disappointment and finding a way to address the issue in a helpful and constructive manner, such as offering a refund or replacement.
Sometimes, difficult situations can escalate into conflict. It’s important to know how to de-escalate conflict and find ways to resolve the issue in a way that is satisfactory for both parties. As mentioned before, one way to do this is by using “I” statements and expressing your own feelings, rather than getting caught up in a blame game. Another way is to find common ground and focus on finding a solution that works for everyone.
Lastly, it’s important to know how to set appropriate boundaries when dealing with difficult people. This means being assertive and setting clear limits on what you’re willing to tolerate. This is another situation where it helps to use “I” statements, such as “I don’t feel comfortable with that” or “I need some time to think about it.” Another way is to establish clear boundaries and stick to them.
For example, let’s say a colleague is constantly cancelling meetings or not showing up on time. Instead of accepting this behaviour, you can set a boundary by saying “I need to be able to rely on you to show up when you say you will or let me know if something changes. I need to be able to rely on you to respect my time.” This way, you are being assertive and setting a clear limit on what you’re willing to tolerate.
So, dealing with difficult customers or other people can be challenging, but by staying calm, actively listening, responding with empathy, de-escalating conflicts, setting boundaries and seeking support when needed you can help to improve the situation. Remember to approach these situations with empathy and understanding, and to focus on finding a solution that works for everyone. Keep in mind that difficult behaviour is often a result of underlying issues and it’s important to approach these situations with empathy and understanding.
"I like difficult people because that means they're perfectionists and they're passionate"
Emotional intelligence (EI or EQ) - the capability of individuals to recognise and manage their emotions and those of others.
Being aware of the concept of EQ and then developing it is essential for employees, regardless of their role. High EQ is no longer an add-on but a ‘must-have.’