Do Daleks get the most out of people that work for them?
Does force and your temper get the most out of people?
I recently wrote an article about wet monkeys, to which one person said to me, “if my staff were like that I’d lose my rag”. That got me thinking, as I’ve been on the receiving end of some short fuses in my time. So if you have a short fuse, but want to control your temper to get more from people, here’s some tips.
5 tips to control your temper
- Sarcasm does not work: One accountant I know uses it all the time and thinks he’s being funny to lighten the mood. What he found really hard to see was that others hated it, and lost respect for him as a result. Humour can work, and sarcasm can be very funny (at the right, limited, moment); but sarcasm delivered when you’re tense is very dangerous.
- Stop, think: I know one person who goes for a two minute walk around the block when she feels her temper starting to well up; that’s good as she’s learnt the early signs of it. It’s made a lot of difference to her team, as she no longer snaps at them. Walking to the drinks machine, the toilet or even just counting to ten really can help. At least you can then respond in the way you choose, rather than the emotive response which is much harder to control.
- Exercise: I got back form the gym 30 minutes before writing this article, and one of the things it always does is to dispel or at least dramatically reduce the emotional tension. Exercise is great for that. So if your “stop, think” from above is linked with a brisk walk or some other exercise, it will be even better.
- Emails: One person I know disconnects his Outlook every time he’s in a bad mood. He got caught out too many times sending furious emails that he wouldn’t have sent once he’d calmed down. At the very least write it, but don’t press send until some hours later. You may then choose to send it, and the point will get made; but you may later choose to make it in a more constructive manner.
- Passing the blame: Blaming the other person for more things that you intend to is easy to do. It sounds a lot more critical if you say “you should never…” than “I’m upset that you…”. Making them angrier is unlikely to help you or the situation, and it’s even worse if you start upsetting people that were not even involved.
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Showing you’re upset is not bad
Somebody seeing that you’re upset isn’t necessarily a bad thing. But if you’re more in control of yourself the energy will be channeled more effectively, which can make it powerful, not deadly. After all, in Dr Who even the Daleks don’t kill everybody straight away!