One of the clients for my company is a large group run by a bunch of highly irrational, ill-informed people. Needless to say they can be a bear to deal with some times. While I’ve by no means mastered the art of dealing with such clients here are some pointers from what I’ve learned so far. In most cases, they’ll carry over to dealings with irrational people in general.
- Don’t expect there decisions to be made based on sound logic
. They are passionate, tend to make rash decisions, and reasoning will often not work. Don’t be shocked when this happens and don’t get flustered when they fail to let facts get in the way of their decisions. If you’re aware that this is the likely process of dealing with these types of people you’ll be better able to handle when it does.
- Everyone feels the need to feel important (even though they are likely not). To placate this, allow them to feel as if they’ve won. For example, plant an idea and then let them take credit for it. Only do this for the little things though otherwise you’ll end up being a whipping boy.
- Document everything. That way, when one or more members of the bureaucracy tries to be important by providing irrelevant or misinformed input, you have proof that their ‘constructive criticisms’ were unwarranted or contrary to previous instructions.