I was in an interesting staff meeting last week.
It was a sort of end-of-period meeting and led by the CEO who is quite a laid-back sort of person.
One member of staff – who is quite outgoing – stated in very clear terms his dissatisfaction with the resource currently devoted to his area. Apparently they are quite under-staffed and it is an issue that he has raised before.
As he made his displeasure known I started to observe the CEO quite closely. I always make a habit of consciously watching people when they come under personal attack as this is the area that I have found hardest as a manager with Asperger Syndrome to cope with.
The CEO practiced the key consideration that I identified a long time ago: he didn’t react aggressively or confrontationally. Instead he let the staff member say what he had to say and let of steam before replying in a very matter-of-fact way using facts as to why change was mot possible.
The staff member didn’t get the answer they wanted, but the issue was dealt with and didn’t escalate.
Key lessons: remain calm, don’t in any way respond personal or allow personal dislike to become a factor and use facts to refute.