Thoughts and Insights by Michael Gregory

Working with Difficult People

The word crazy in script hand writing written with a pencil and the pencil laying under the word
November 11th, 2019

Working with a crazy person - try self distancing

It has actually been found that speaking to yourself in the second or third person rather than the first person can change your emotional focus. Why is that important? When you find yourself starting to feel angry, this self-distracting technique can and actually will help you better regulate your emotions. This is a very powerful tool. The thing is to remember to do it. This is how. This three-step process can help you control your own temper and become known as the person that remains cool under pressure.  Both of these can help you with others, your career and at home.

Five people fist bumping over their desks and lap tops
October 21st, 2019

Hear are neuroscience insights for partnering with crazy people

Would you like to know how to communicate with those that don’t what to hear you at all? Do you have those with whom you simply cannot communicate? Do you know others that just seem to be crazy? In previous articles a focus on listening has been emphasized. That works with most people. We need to actively listen. On the other hand, you cannot push a rope, you can only pull a rope. If someone does not want to work with you that’s their choice. Move on. Given all of this history, this article takes these issues to another level based on neuroscience. If you want to know how to work with those you really cannot stand, or you find really hard to work with, read on.

Three figures standing and demonstrating emotion with each other having a discussion. Each of the three figures is highlighted with emotional words on the figure.
October 7th, 2019

This is how to overcome team conflict at work with three steps

When you think of conflict at work, what comes to mind? Wouldn’t it be great to have a relatively simple model to keep in mind that you could use with any situation? We tend to remember well when we focus on three items. With that in mind I am suggesting you take LEA with you when you have a conflict at work. LEA stands for Listen, Empathize and Act. When you carry out all three of these actions at work that can make a major difference to resolve conflicts.

Four big puzzle pieces coming together on a table held by 4 individuals
September 30th, 2019

This is how to reach out to those with whom you disagree

From previous blogs you know that The Collaboration Effect ® is all about connecting relationships, actively listening and educating judiciously to negotiate closure. This can work very well when applied to business, home or in life. But what about with individuals with whom we disagree? In this commentary the emphasis is on finding shared values and identities by focusing on the individual. This technique can even work with those with whom we disagree politically. That is a very powerful statement. Read on to learn more. However, remember you can only pull a rope. You cannot push a rope. If the other party is firm in their position and is not willing to interact with you, that is there position. Walk away. If someone truly does not want to interact with you accept this. That is their decision. On the other hand, if the other party is at least willing to interact with you, that indicates there is at least a spark of hope. The ideas presented here may just allow you to take that spark and potentially develop it into a better workable relationship.  

Woman with boxing glove hitting man in the face
September 22nd, 2019

This is how to address conflict at work

We all have conflict every day at work, at home and in life.  Did you ever stop to think that conflict stems from one of the three broad areas relating to task, relationship and values?  This article takes a look at all three and offers you some ideas to help.  There are other ways that can be used to classify conflict, but for the purposes of this article these three headings offer one way to explore the topic.

Storm clouds gathering
September 9th, 2019

This is how to deal with difficult people and negotiations at work

There are times at work when you have to deal with difficult people and negotiations at the same time. Sometimes you have to deal with difficult situations and negotiations at the same time too. This commentary explores sources to provide you with tools you can use to prepare for and address these types of conflicts.

Man in suit sitting at desk looking at phone and texting
September 4th, 2019

What about texts in negotiations? What do you think?

You may think texts are for the young and new entries into the work force. You may think texts don’t belong in a work environment. On the other hand, you may think texting is perfectly normal. It is a way of life. It is a way to get to the point with another person quickly.

golf clubs set up at the practice range
August 19th, 2019

What questions should you ask when preparing for a valuation discussion with the IRS?

This article addresses how to prepare and what questions to ask when involved in a facilitation, negotiation or mediation with another party. The focus here is on a business valuation issue with the IRS.  Preparation is key. Conducting a mock interaction ahead of time can be extremely valuable. 

A street sign at the intersection of Impossible and Possible with a background blue sky with some white clouds
July 15th, 2019

Does Conflict Resolution Really Work at Work?

Whenever two people are involved with anything, it is only natural to expect that at some point there may be different perspectives that could lead to conflict. This is only natural. We often think if I could make all of the decisions, the world would be a better place. Then we reflect and realize I don’t have all the answers. We need others and we need their ideas. This article focuses on different types of conflict resolution at work.

Older couple smiling with each other sitting on a bench
July 1st, 2019

How to Avoid Conflict in Family Business Succession Planning

According to the Harvard Law Program on Negotiation there are three kinds of conflict in business and how to avoid them.  These are: Intercultural Conflict: Be Careful Not to Stereotype Conflict with Friends and Family: Discuss Difficult Issues Up Front Workplace Conflict: Test Your Assumptions and Choose a Role This article will focus on exiting family businesses addressing both the family and the workplace conflict issues. Keep in mind the exit planning may involve selling to the next generation, to another buyer, going public, an Employees Stock Option Plan, or something else. To keep it simple the scenario that follows assumes a transition to a next generation family member.  Keep in mind there are a host of other issues too. For example, are the existing owners going to remain working, be advisors, be on a real board of directors, be on an advisory board, have employment contracts, covenants not to compete and a host of other issues. These issues go beyond the scope of this commentary.

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