6 People Who Will Destroy Your Team (and How to Deal With Them)

One could train the team members to hone their skills or learn those brand new tools, but experts often say that it is impossible to fully change the work-attitudes people bring with them. This is especially more difficult at senior levels, where many years of experience ensure the attitudes are almost set in stone. So, as a manager hiring talent into your team, what must you be vary of? Isaiah Hankel recently shared this list for businesses.

We thought this was just as relevant in team settings. So here’s our list of the most tough 6 people who will destroy your team culture. It all starts with hiring them right, however, we are happy to share pointers to solve for a potential situation, if you are already in soup.

6 People Who Will Destroy Your Team (and How to Deal With Them)

1. The constant complainer:

We’ve all met those team members whose  raison d’être is to show you all the problems that exist in everything they touch or get exposed to. Long arguments ensue and this negativity quickly finds its way to other team members. The projects tend to sink soon afterwards.

How to deal with a constant complainer in your team:

Confront the complainer and tell them that they need to be ‘solution focused’. Ask them point black- so what do you recommend? Force them into taking up responsibility and be action focused. Make a team rule that says, if you find a problem or issue that’s great. But your greatness will be rewarded when you come up with a constructive alternative or at least strong facts before you shoot down someone else’s work. Also, hand them these guidelines for presenting feedback.

2. The perpetual hater:

The world is crashing for this one. It consists just of one thing: hate for all products, all people and anything that the day presents. There may be varying degrees of the behavior of course. Some take a serious turn with racism, sexism or such serious issues of unresolved and unasked for hatred.

How to deal with the perpetual hater in your team:

Find out the source of their insecurity. Is this a childhood problem (OK, kidding!)? But, you need to draw a clear line. If the hatred comes from plain negativity, it requires some one to one counselling. Although, if team members note that hatred is targeted towards a certain sex, race or age, that sure can’t be tolerated and needs strong action on your part as a manager.

3. The narcissist:

We all joke about the team mate who didn’t even stay shut in his farewell speech, announcing categorically that he hoped that others had ‘learned’ some stuff from his divine presence. Confidence is a skill many management professionals lack. However, there are plenty that in plain words display arrogance and are for the lack of more certain words, just full of themselves. Their insecurity sometimes is so high that they may not even accept any authority- because according to them they’ve already arrived.

How to deal with the narcissist in your team:

Give them direct feedback. Appreciating and crediting other team members is a quality that allows for great team working culture. Encourage them to indulge in it and look beyond themselves. Start a weekly team huddle in your team and have the most quiet members share their achievements. Have each team member talk about what they appreciated about someone else in the team that week. Make your narcissist come up with strong appreciative pointers on others.

4. The depressed soul:

Those that walk like the cat died. Except that it happens everyday.

How to deal with the depressed soul in your team:

Do some research, get to know this team member. Try and figure out if something is seriously wrong and if you can help them in any way. If it is just a mere attitudinal trait, try and make this team member responsible for team ‘happy hours’. Force happiness and see the results. If this doesn’t work, try giving feedback about how negativity impacts the team and ask the team member to take accountability for his/her actions.

5. The pleasure seeker:

There are those that come to office everyday only to find time to gossip about the latest new video or the picture of the new colleague on social media. Or end up spending more time at the coffee machine than their desk. And before you know it, the whole team is in a discussion about something that the project clearly does not have buffer time for. As a project leader or a manager concerned about team productivity, this is a serious issue.

How to deal with the pleasure seeker in your team:

Set up a strong deadline management system for your pleasure seeker colleague. Create mid-week productivity checkpoints. Clearly this team member has a way with networking and talking to others, so how about setting some individual contribution goals?

6. The needy one:

Some need a grand salary, some a great work environment. And the needy ones need an ego boost every time they do something they feel is path-breaking. Unfortunately, sometimes it is not as extraordinary as they assume it to be. Their need for appreciation is so high that they sometimes become crabby, non productive and also over critical of others on the team. Their insecurity sometimes does not allow them to appreciate any genuine constructive feedback.

How to deal with the needy one in your team:

Give them a couple of difficult assignments. Try to use their ambitious ability to impress you in a positive way. You will notice many will come to terms with their own abilities and try and seek opportunities to improve themselves. If not, then get them to a meeting and discuss the impact they are having directly, but with empathy.

Are there any other difficult types of attitudes that you experience in your teams? How did you solve the issues? Please feel to share details with us in the comments!

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