The ‘difficult’ client

We’ve all encountered the ‘difficult’ client. The one who’s angry for no apparent reason, upset no matter what we do and frustrated with everyone who tries to help.

Watch out, she’s back”. “There’s no point trying to please him, nothing makes him happy”. “She refuses to talk to me”. “Careful, he caused a scene last week”. “She’s so difficult”. “He’s feisty”. 

When working with people who are hard to get along with, instead of wondering what’s the matter with them, we should be asking what’s happened to them.

What do they believe? What have they experienced? What are they feeling?

Dealing with challenging clients requires us to appreciate that most of the time, people’s behaviours come from how they feel and what they know.

Understanding the reasons behind people’s behaviours is more work than using restraints and administering medications. And it’s a lot more effective than passing judgment and getting defensive.

When we don’t figure out the reasons why people are behaving a certain way, we miss out on opportunities to help make their lives better.

The people we struggle with the most often have stories that will break our hearts and buckle our knees, if we listen.