How to Lead the 5 Most Difficult People

How to Lead Difficult People #2) The Negative Person

The negative personality appears to be unhappy by choice and is often the wet blanket to any group gathering or meeting. It’s not just the difference between a glass half empty or a glass half full, but this person seems to have poured out half of a full glass on purpose.

The negative person is typically characterized as one who sees only problems and not solutions.

Lead by acknowledging the problem but focus on the positive and insist on moving toward solutions.

How to Lead Difficult People #3) The Argumentative Person

The argumentative personality needs to win. It often doesn’t matter what the topic is, and with this person, you usually feel more like you are in a courtroom debate rather than a conversation. The need to be right and win is greater than the goals of the ministry.

The argumentative person is usually a strong personality and articulate, characterized by a very aggressive approach and must win at all cost.

Lead by establishing boundaries for a healthy and productive conversation. Continually keep the big picture in the forefront and agree on the end goal before starting the conversation.

How to Lead Difficult People #4) The Duplicitous Person

The duplicitous person has a political bent and can be two-faced. They are not loyal to relationships and maybe passive-aggressive. They are kind one moment and turn on you the next.

Thankfully, this personality is the rarest of the five, but can also do the most damage.

The duplicitous person is known for gossip, changing opinions, and rarely taking a stand that does not benefit them personally.

Don’t lead by fear or from a distance, but straight on with bold confidence and direct language. Don’t put them in charge of anything until you see change.

How to Lead Difficult People #5) The Apathetic Person

Essentially, this personality just doesn’t care. They don’t necessarily hurt anything, but neither do they help anything. This person isn’t as aggressive as the first four personalities but can be just as difficult because they are simply unmotivated.

The apathetic person is characterized as pleasant but unhelpful, without an opinion, and lacking passion.

Always love this person, as with all five personalities, but don’t invest too much time. Lead by letting them know you would love to see them grow and be part of something great, but they have to show some initiative.

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Dan Reiland
Dr. Dan Reiland serves as Executive Pastor at 12Stone Church in Lawrenceville, Georgia. He previously partnered with John Maxwell for 20 years, first as Executive Pastor at Skyline Wesleyan Church in San Diego, then as Vice President of Leadership and Church Development at INJOY. He and Dr. Maxwell still enjoy partnering on a number of church related projects together.