It takes a lot to be a leader as leadership is often faced with a lot of challenges. Even the success or failure of an organization depends on its leaders. One of the most troublesome challenges in being a leader is knowing how to manage difficult but talented employees.
Employees are an integral resource of an organization. Without them, no business can flourish. This is why companies strive to work on employee retention. Top talents are even more crucial workers as their contribution can be indispensable.
While talented employees are valuable assets, sometimes their character can get in the way. Skills are important but so is attitude. It’s important for leaders to know how to deal with difficult but talented employees so the organization can work in harmony.
This is also for talented employees not to disengage and learn how to better deal with others. Incivility is detrimental to an organization. Here are statistical data from a survey conducted by Weber Shandwick:
- 30% of employers mentioned that they’ve fired or threatened to fire a worker because of incivility.
- 25% of workers quit their job because of a toxic workplace.
- 87% of employees said incivility has an impact on their performance.
- 45% reported that they had the desire to quit.
- 55% said their morale suffered.
- 36% experienced having lower quality of work.
- 26% became less creative.
It’s important how to deal with and confront difficult employees as they can affect other workers. Here are different ways on how you can manage difficult but talented employees:
Gain Understanding and Make Them Aware
No one wants to become a negative or a toxic person in the workplace. However, employees may be unaware that they are who they don’t want to be. A lot of difficult people mean well but they can come off the wrong way with how they express themselves.
According to Tony Robbins, behind every negative action is a positive intention. Negative actions or behaviors can be a call for help. If you are having problems with difficult employees, know the cause of their behavior.
Do they lack recognition? Are they insensitive to others? Is there a conflict in work style? Are they bothered with personal problems? Do they focus on problems? By knowing the cause of their misbehavior, you can have a better idea on how to deal with them.
If you have difficult employees, make them aware. As mentioned earlier, they may not be aware that they are difficult workers. Do this in a way that’s constructive. The importance of good leadership is essential as it calls for excellent skills to influence people.
Make them aware but also end it with empowering them to become better. Instead of telling them potential consequences for not changing, show them all the great benefits they can enjoy if they do change for the better.
Display Emotional Intelligence
One of the best ways to influence the workforce is to be a good example of how they can be able to work with others in a harmonious manner. By displaying emotional intelligence, you are teaching employees how to best deal with people in an indirect way.
By showing how you can shift a negative confrontation into a positive event, workers can learn how they may do the same. They can learn how to confront others dealing with work stress, how to deal with difficult co-workers and even become generous with their knowledge.
More than sharing what they know about work, they can be more trusting and provide each other more personal advice such as using a student loan consolidation calculator.Employees can also collaborate better and a spirit of teamwork can resonate around the workplace.
You can foster a positive company culture by setting a good example for the employees. With a positive company culture, you can experience an improvement in employee retention, engagement, productivity and overall performance.
Having a positive company culture is one of the best ways in attracting and keeping top talents. More than setting a good example, you can propagate the knowledge of emotional intelligence by:
- Conducting leadership training
- Doing workplace training in emotional intelligence
All it takes for people to become better with other people is to have a deeper understanding of emotions. One of the best books to read about the topic is “How to Win Friends and Influence People” by Dale Carnegie.
The book has a lot of tips and tricks on how to deal with even the most difficult individuals. Manage difficult but talented employees by understanding them and empowering them to create a positive change in themselves.
Don’t argue but listen to what they have to say. Tell them you’ll support them but they have to support you too. This way, you help them create a change without conflict. Some talented employees can be difficult but as they say, “sometimes those who challenge you the most, teach you the best.”