Inspirational Infusion

#75 — June 1, 2015

When dealing with people, remember you are not dealing with creatures of logic, but creatures of emotion.

— Dale Carnegie

Greetings, Inspired Travelers!

What is it about the summer months that seems to bring out the difficult? It often seems as if our teams - and sometimes our leaders - step into the role of Lead Curmudgeon as the summer approaches. Maybe it’s the heat. Maybe it’s the visions of vacations. Maybe it’s the realization that summer is upon us and we are not where we want to be. Maybe, well, there are a lot of maybes and none of them make life easier to handle.

Sorting through difficult dealings is not for the faint of heart but it is a necessary part of leadership, and those who are successful are the Doyennes of the Difficult. And their futures are on a trajectory of success. How to begin? Well, first, identify the signs - sometimes our most productive team members are the most challenging. And the most needy. Look at the team. Along with high producers, are you dealing with:

♦ Finger Pointers Masters of excuses and blame making
♦ Apple Polishers Masters of self-proclaimed success often at the expense of others
♦ Karate Kids Masters in the art of self-defense and kicking away responsibility
♦ Know-It-Alls Masters of the intellect who must appear to know all

According to recent research, while these personalities are different they all share one common core characteristic: the need to promote their self worth by promoting their self image. Yes, there is fear at the root. And fear makes us all behave badly. It makes us less than. It makes us, well, difficult. So, what’s a leader to do? Here are a few ideas to try over the summer months:

♦ Collaborate The experience of a shared effort changes us through relationship
♦ Anticipate What are the hot buttons and how can you change your approach
♦ Listen Deeply
♦ Engage Honestly, respectfully share how the behavior is affecting you and the team

Dealing with difficult people is never easy but don’t let the summer months make your team lose its cool! They are too important - and so are you!

Be Magnificent!
Have an Inspirational Day!


Deborah Darlington specializes in helping people reach their full potential and expand their influence through interpersonal skill coaching and relationship building. If you would like to increase productivity and jettison your team to success, give her a call at 215 260 1611 or drop an email at and begin a cool conversation that will prevent a simmer from boiling over!