Milestone Partners


  Dealing with Difficult People






May your best work happen when you face the worst situations!


Please contact me if you want to talk more about this.                                   Bruce  




Bruce O. Mabee, MS, CPLP

Managing Partner

Phone 1-630-960-0425





Get Them On Your Side by Samuel Bacharach.

Practical applications of the methods from the classic "Power & Politics in Organizations" by Bacharach and Ed Lawler.

Read specific cases and see the core models from Get Them On Your Side:



The Empowered Manager by Peter Block.

Outline of the "Empowered Manager":

Link to buy the book:



Getting To Yes by Roger Fisher and William Ury.

Outline of Getting To Yes:

To buy the book at Amazon:



Bases of Social Power by John R. P. French & Bertram Raven.

Short summary of the model:



A few additional points about dealing with difficult people:


"What key points, as you leave, do you want to be sure to remember and use?" Two comments from workshop participants:

1. "Integrity."


2.  "[I want to be sure to use] those Win-Win Negotiation points."


Comments from Bruce:

1. Difficult people are not the problem. The problem starts if I ignore the others. When difficult people show up, how do I deal with them sincerely, yet not give away all the attention that the others -- and the issues of many others -- also deserve?


2. Don't get hooked. Those who sabotage often have more energy for that than I do. Whether I get charged up or demoralized by battles, the battles must not become the main point. I need to build the major energy for the non-confrontational, maybe tedious, work of real progress.


3. Be open to success. A good outcome is rarely world-changing, rarely immediate, and rarely the same as your original plan. A reasonable goal may be that 1) no one is permanently scarred and 2) we each achieve something we want. This is a crucial starting point for many of the methods for dealing with difficult people.