Talent

Do Your Supervisors Know How to Manage Challenging Employees?

Supervising other people is never easy, but some employees make it particularly difficult. Challenging employees can be a disruptive influence, damaging morale and making it difficult for their coworkers to function productively. It takes skillful management and patience to turn things around with difficult employees.

“Skillful” is the operative word here. Most people aren’t born with management skills—and just being promoted to supervisor or manager doesn’t automatically anoint them with the appropriate skills either. The majority of people need to be trained on how to manage employees—especially the challenging ones.

The editors at BLR® understand this and put together a PowerPoint® course, How to Manage Challenging Employees, that includes the following training exercise to assist you in building these skills in your supervisors and managers.


You know your managers could do a better job if they were trained, and now there’s a convenient and reasonable way to get it done—BLR’s Leadership Library at the online, 24/7 TrainingToday. Get More Information.


Exercise Objective: To review strategies for managing challenging employees effectively.

Instructions: For each situation, briefly write your strategy for dealing with the challenging employee.

  1. Joe constantly complains about everything—job assignments, equipment, coworkers, work schedules, any kind of change. You name it, Joe can find fault with it. How would you deal with Joe’s challenging attitude and behavior?

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  1. Jen thinks rules are for other people, not for her. If she doesn’t outright break a rule, she bends it to the breaking point. How would you manage Jen’s challenging attitude and behavior?

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  1. Carl is the department’s rumor king. When he isn’t making rumors up, he’s spreading the ones he hears. His latest creation is that there are going to be some big layoffs that will affect the department. You know for a fact that this is not true. How would you deal with Carl’s challenging behavior?

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  1. Nancy tries to make herself look good by making her coworkers look bad. She frequently goes behind people’s backs and bad-mouths them to others, including the group supervisor. If you were Nancy’s supervisor, how would you handle this situation?

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Worried about ever getting your managers and supervisors trained to be effective leaders? It isn’t easy to fit it in—schedulewise or budgetwise—but now there’s BLR’s Leadership Training for Managers and Supervisors. Train all your people, at their convenience, 24/7, for one standard fee. Get More Information.


In tomorrow’s Advisor, we’ll give guidance on managing these challenging employees, and we’ll look at a whole library of training courses on leadership development for supervisors and managers.