Difficult personalities go unmanaged in the workplace

A massive 98% of managers across the UK said they come into contact with difficult work colleagues on a regular basis, according to a survey.

A study of more than 250 senior professionals, by training company PTP Training & Marketing, found that half said they encountered difficult people on a daily basis.

And despite the scale of the problem only 15% of managers admitted to confronting the member of staff who is being difficult.

The survey highlights that the person most likely to be labelled “difficult” is male, aged between 35 and 45 and working at a mid management level.

While only 15% of senior professionals confront the difficult people they meet, more than half the sample (55%) claim they would try to help the difficult person by discussing any problems.

However, at the other end of the scale 30% do nothing constructive and said they resorted to “putting up with or ignoring” the difficult people in the office.

PTP managing director Marc Holland said managers must possess the necessary people skills to deal effectively with difficult people who can be a considerable barrier to office harmony, motivation and performance.

“It is important to be able to identify difficult personality types and be able to respond to them in a constructive way,” he said.

“A well-trained manager should be able to spot which personality types are likely to clash and can use their skills to diffuse situations, which could get out of hand and cause bad feeling and problems among staff.”

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