Riding Out the Storm of Bad Behavior

Not everyone is able to let go of a person’s bad behavior or insensitivity. It’s like a tornado that moves on and fizzles out on its own, but leaves a path of destruction everyone else has to deal with.

Have you ever been with someone who gets angry when they are hungry? I am sure we all have that one person in our lives who turns into an absolute monster when his or her belly starts to grumble. It’s the worst. Worst still is that there is nowhere to run since the hunger creeps up on them, and all of a sudden, you are stuck in the rage.

When those hunger pangs start, well, they become somewhat of...no... I will rephrase, they BECOME a pain! There is nothing you can say or do that will turn things around at this point. You are in for a ride.

You: “Do you want a...”

Grumps: “No!”

You: “What do you think about...”

Grumps: “Don’t care!”

You: “You look nice today.”


There are no right answers or correct doors to open. If this were a game show, you would be a guaranteed loser even if you chose door #1, 2, 17, or 150! There is also nothing you can offer (with the exception of food) that will make them feel better. 

Sometimes you just have to wait it out. If you are sitting in a restaurant, the time ticks away on the clock and what seems like a seven-hour wait is actually only 10 minutes.

Your friend devours the food. Not looking at or speaking with you. They don’t bother to look up even. They are similar to a starved animal that has been caged. Once the inner beast is satisfied, all of a sudden, what was once a monster, becomes the contrary.

Grumps: “Do you want a...”

You: “No!”

Grumps: “What do you think about...”

You: “Don’t care!”

Grumps: “You look nice today.”


Don’t Be the Storm

That is the thing about a bad attitude. It’s lasting and contagious. Not everyone is able to let go of a person’s bad behavior or insensitivity. It’s like a tornado that moves on and fizzles out on its own, but leaves a path of destruction everyone else has to deal with. Not everyone can recover and put the pieces back together. Sometimes the tornado changes things forever.

As managers, we have to remember not to be the storm everyone has to recover from. Not everyone can just move on from your actions when YOU are ready.

  • Busy with deadlines and snapping your responses to everyone? Not a good excuse!
  • Personal life a disaster and your mind is elsewhere, so you are indifferent to everything that is happening? Not a good excuse!
  • Things not turning out as you expected, so you sulk like a child? You look like a fool!

 Pulling ourselves out of our stresses is not an easy task. We get that! However, as mature adults, and especially as a leader, it is a must to ensure the success of your team. A positive attitude and patience can go a long way in coaching your team. When it is time to provide training and development opportunities, we have to be someone they want to learn from rather than having a fear of the alternatives.

What’s the lesson from today? Turn off your tornado and see more success when you need your team’s attention.

Kevin James Saunders is a trainer for Oculus Training, a training and mystery shopping company offering sensitivity, sales, and customer service training programs around the world. For more information, call 888.OCULUS4 or visit www.oculustraining.com. You also can connect with Oculus on Twitter @oculustraining, via e-mail at peoplecare@oculustraining.com or visit it on Facebook and Instagram.


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