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How well do you deal with angry people?

SmartPulse — our weekly nonscientific reader poll in SmartBrief on Leadership — tracks feedback from more than 190,000 business leaders. We run the poll question each week in our e-newsletter.

Last week, we asked: How well do you deal with angry people?

  • Very well — I get them to calm down and talk: 41.8%
  • OK — but it takes a lot of work on my part: 48.95%
  • Not well — I have a hard time calming them down: 7.71%
  • Poorly — I end up making the situation worse: 1.54%

How to deal with anger? Anger is rarely productive. Unfortunately, as leaders, you likely have more than your fair share of opportunities to deal with angry people. The better you are at calming things down, the better your organization will perform. When it comes to dealing with angry people, the better you understand the source of their anger, the better you’ll be able to deal with it. Bottom line — defuse those angry situations as quickly as possible because if you don’t, escalation is very likely and you’ll have a crisis on your hands.

Mike Figliuolo is managing director of thoughtLEADERS and author of “One Piece of Paper: The Simple Approach to Powerful, Personal Leadership.”