I’m sure if I ask you to think about frustrating people in your organization you can quickly riddle off a few names. Dealing with people that frustrate you is part of the job and it has never been as important as it is today to fine-tune your skills for how to deal with frustrating people. With more companies embracing diversity and inclusion, as they should, you will face more people that see things differently. Just because they frustrate you doesn’t mean they are clueless. They frustrate you because you feel like they are standing in your way or slowing down your progress but have you ever sat back and thought, I’m probably frustrating them as well. Since you can’t do anything about other people’s behavior, there are things you can do to improve your effectiveness in dealing with people that frustrate you, and today I’m going to share with you 5 tips for how to do this.
Understand Their Why
While you may think that someone’s opinion or actions seem random, there usually is a reason behind their way of thinking. Try to find out their objectives, which will help you discuss the subject and find a compromise. Unless you can find this out, you’ll spend countless hours and days wasting your energy on this person.
When you’ve been frustrated in the past with someone, it’s often due to a lack of communication. This doesn’t necessarily mean you are speaking different languages, but it may be that your way of communicating doesn’t easily work with theirs. To try and ease any tension between you, work to acknowledge the vocabulary they understand best and how they think about certain topics.
Lose The Battle to Win the War
For big projects and strategies to move forward in an organization, many moving parts have to come together. You should be willing to put your ego aside and both accept and offer that not everything will go your way. By keeping your eye on the larger vision and endorsing others' way of thinking for some of the moving parts, you’ll force frustrating people to put their guards down and partner with you more.
Build A Relationship
Even though we spend a lot of time with coworkers and colleagues, sometimes even more than our own family, oftentimes we know very little about each person. It is a surface-level relationship for years and the lack of deep relationships makes it hard to truly partner with someone outside of job-related incentives. This is not just how to deal with frustrating people, but especially with frustrating people, take the time to know them as a person. Find common interests you can connect on, resulting in better communication and less push back between the parties involved.
Look in the Mirror
Sometimes, it’s not the other person who is to blame. While this is probably a hard pill to swallow, it’s time to examine yourself and acknowledge your actions. Maybe you are the cause of the tension due to the way you are reacting to the situation. Maybe this other person’s idea and approach is better than yours? Maybe they have more expertise? Be willing to reflect on the situation without your ego getting in the way and objectively review the options while keeping in mind your larger goals and vision.
While frustrating people will appear at any point in your career, you’ll find a way around any situation by following these tips. Instead of reacting with anger in the future, react with empathy and understanding. After all, that is the cornerstone of diversity ad inclusion.
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