Difficult personalities make management “interesting”

Managing personalities is as important as managing any other aspect of your business. Your financial management and accounting is important, but much of that can be contracted out to the accounting industry. Unless you are a sole proprietor and work with no one, at some point you will have to manage people. And the people you hire will have to manage other people.

So what do you do when you have an employee who is “brilliant” but whom no one likes working with, and is unpleasant, blunt or rude. Do you just shrug and provide a sheepish look when he or she ends a meeting or presentation with an unpleasant outburst that le the room is suddenly, uncomfortably quiet?

Or do you adopt the modern management panacea and send them to an HR seminar? If they are as brilliant as you believe them to be, they will add you to the list of people for whom they provide naked shows of contempt.

While they may be brilliant and drive some portion of your revenue, you must be careful. Business litigation involving a hostile workplace or harassment lawsuit may be the most conspicuous example of a “cost” such behavior may impose on a business, it is not the only one.

As part of your risk management process, you and your managers need to ensure that such a person is not a manager, at least of people. Businesses often confuse brilliance in one area, say technical or verbal skills, with all skills, including that of managing people. This is not always true.

Your skill at properly recruiting and hiring the correct people to manage other people will be one element of your business that will influence your long-term success.

bizjournal.com, “How to deal with the brilliant employee who is rude to everyone,” Alice Waagen, Contributing Writer, September 9, 2014