Some leaders tend to be competitive, hard-driving people. While they may have high IQs and technical skills, their emotional skills lag far behind. They tend to be folks who are weak in their ability to manage their emotions. They fly off the handle in an instant. They make no attempt to rein themselves in. They believe yelling and intimidating is the best way to manage people and they may be totally clueless on the impact they are having on others. So, what can you do if you have to work with a person who cannot manage his/her emotions?
1. First and foremost, set limits. Explain that their behavior is upsetting to you and you refuse to be treated in an abusive or disrespectful way.
2. Consistently, every time you are treated in this manner, make a clear statement that this is not acceptable.
3. When you feel like you are being belittled or attacked, refuse to get into a situation where you are counter attacking. The leader will be more adept arguing and you probably will end up feeling worse.
4. Be consistent in refusing to respond to belittling and abusive behavior.
5. If the behavior persists, Seek out help from someone in the organization. If that is impossible, seek help from an executive coach.
For more ideas on dealing with folk who cannot manage their emotions, please click on the link (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Qfx_aFLfhw) to watch my videotape recorded for the University of Michigan Alumni Association. Also join in the conversation by posting commentary about your ideas on dealing with the situation.
Coach Rob Pasick