Managing Volatile People

Get the Best From Emotional Team Members

Managing Volatile People - Get the Best From Emotional Team Members

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How do you avoid setting people off?

Flavia manages a team of professionals who work together successfully on highly creative projects. However, she is becoming increasingly concerned about the effect that one team member, Sayid, has on the wider group dynamic.

Sayid is one of Flavia's most talented team members, but his behavior is extremely unpredictable. Some days he's charming, funny and a pleasure to work with; at other times, he can be angry, moody and rude.

His colleagues find his behavior upsetting, and they feel that they're "walking on egg shells" around him. They've become reluctant to involve him in discussions, decisions or social events, which makes the problem even worse.

When Sayid is on form, he's an effective contributor to the team. When he isn't, his erratic behavior is disruptive and damaging. It has also created a split between those team members who remain loyal to him and those who have had enough.

So, how can you deal with volatile people on your team? We'll look at things you can do below.

What Does It Mean to Be Volatile?

Merriam-Webster defines "volatile" as "likely to change in a very sudden or extreme way." This means that volatile people likely display unexpected changes of emotion that can be hard to manage, and that can have a negative impact on the wider team.


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