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How Do I Handle a Personality Conflict

Have you ever met that one person you just donít get along with? No matter what you do or try to do, you just cannot get along. In fact, your personalities are as different as night and day. What happens when you have to work with this person? Spending eight hours a day in the company of someone who just sets your teeth on edge can be a challenge.

Ongoing, never-ending issues with co-workers are definitely not fun and no way to spend the day. Wouldnít the world be a better place if we could all just get along? Dealing with personality conflicts may take work, but it will definitely make the work hours seem less stressful. Here are some ways to handle personality conflicts at work:

Try talking Ė Itís amazing how much can be resolved by having a simple conversation. Sometimes we have built so much up in our minds that even minor situations are often driven out of proportion. Sometimes the other person isnít even aware of the war going on your mind. Sit down and have a conversation to see if the conflict is real or imaginary on your part. Unless they are truly evil, chances are they may not be aware they are irritating you. A conversation may end the conflict.

Find a mutual location to hold the conversation. Donít stand at the opening to their cubicle blocking their exit. Make the conversation as non-threatening as possible. Donít call them to the ďprincipalís officeĒ as if they have done something wrong.

Play up the positive Ė If you can see they are making a real effort to change, play up the positive. Look for the positive outcomes in the situation. Make sure you provide feedback on how you notice and really appreciate the efforts they are making.

Agree to disagree Ė Sometimes you are just not going to get your way. Itís a fact of life. There are times you will need to agree to disagree and move on.

Did it ever occur to you that perhaps itís you, not them? This is a hard pill to swallow. Take a moment to do some self-reflection. Have you noticed that perhaps you were in a bad mood? You could have a totally non-related reason for being out of sorts. It could be the other person is right and you are disagreeing as a matter of principle even though you may be wrong. Donít forget you are human too. You will make errors and have bad moments as well. Acknowledging that it may be you and not them will help you to handle the personality conflict even better.

Everyone is equal. You may be in conflict, but picking on the person will not help. Strive to treat everyone the same, even the person you are having a personality conflict with.

Finally, keep communications open. If the person who is annoying you most needs to deal with you on a work related issue, let the conflict go. They may be sincere and you will end up looking like the bad guy.

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