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  • Writer's pictureDoug Fleener

Dealing With a Frustrating Employee or Colleague

My friend Craig likes to say that retail would be pretty easy if it weren’t for people and products, and the product part isn’t that hard. I love that line.

Leadership isn’t too far off. Strategy, tactics, and so many other areas are usually easier than people.

The most important lesson I learned on managing people I got in recovery.

In recovery, they say hate the disease, not the person. Separating the disease from the person makes it easier to help the person who is struggling in recovery.

The same is true with those you work with. We make it about the person and not the behaviors and actions. It is such a barrier to success.

We take things personally. We believe the other person’s actions indicate how much they do or don’t respect us. It’s not about us. It’s not even about them. It’s about the behaviors and actions we want to see differently.

One of the biggest impediments to coaching employees is the leader making it about the employee rather than the behaviors and actions.

Be unhappy with their performance. Don’t be unhappy with them. Focus on the behaviors and actions you want to see going forward. That’s what matters. Help them do that, and you’ll be happy with the employee and their performance.

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