Dealing with Mannerisms

The conventional definition of mannerism is – possessing unique character traits. However, with time the word mannerism has become synonymous to arrogance and ego. You see a person with a habit of exaggeration and you tag that person with the pet name of being Mr. Mannerism or more clearly The Reggie Mantle.

These people have some certain qualities. You can recognize them by these. 

  • They are the attention seekers. They will do anything to be the centre of the crowd and gain everyone’s admiration. They bask in the glory of being ahead of everyone else.
  • They can go to any extant to gain the credit for a job. Even when someone else has performed the job, they do not stop.
  • They steal ideas and pronounce them as their own. You may feel foolish to hear them explain to everyone your own thought and not for once mention you.
  • In their world, no one else exists but themselves. You will frequently hear them using ‘I’. There is no place for ‘WE’ in their lives.
  • They snatch the mike, “not literally”, at the time of any discussion and begin heading the meeting.
  • They are very interested in ideas, only when it is their own.
  • They bask in glory of making others feel inferior. They will find fault in everything you do and will make sure to tell you in front of everyone.
  • They are always right. Even if they are wrong, they will not admit it.

Now, imagine this person in your workplace. Better, yet in your team. How will you deal with this walking ego? You cannot burst into uncontrollable anger and behave badly with this person. It is your office after all. What do you do then? You will have to apply your brain and imagination while handling this individual.

You can ignore this person. It may be easier when you are dealing with Mr. Mannerism outside the workplace premises. But in the office, you have no way of getting around this person. You will have to handle the situation with tact. However, not paying much attention can be a good starting point.

If you are leading a team and you notice such a person in the group, you will have to be extra careful. Do not feed into other team members’ anger and make the situation worse.

Do not accuse this person all the time either. Take time and analyze the situation instead. Do not encourage erratic behavior within a professional team.

As a leader, you should take effort to make the condition of the team better. Try to make Mr. Mannerism relaxed. If you give out the impression that you know more than he does, he will definitely react. Instead talk to him and ask for his opinion while heading a meeting. It is in a way boosting the ego. But you will have to maintain a peaceful environment. Therefore, be tactful and not aggressive.

Do not try to kill the ego. It may lead to revolting attitude. Instead, try to reduce the sharpness of the attitude. It will be effective for your team’s performance.

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