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Knowledge I Wish I Had as a First-Time Manager

I was a first-time manager having a conversation with a woman on my team. I mentioned that I noticed her work had been suffering lately, still good, but not her usual quality. I wasn’t scolding, I was simply wondering why.

She burst out in tears. The more she tried to control herself, the harder she cried. I can only imagine what my face looked like, but I can guarantee based on her reaction I was not helping the situation. She said she was dealing with a lot of very stressful personal situations and told me how hard she was trying but it was difficult.

I can’t remember what I said, but it was not helpful. I attempted to reassure her - she was great at her job and probably many other things that I thought were appropriate, but did nothing to help.

We don’t leave our emotions and personal life at home. Just like we sometimes don’t leave work at the office. I learned the hard way that crying happens at work (don’t fool yourself, both men and women cry).

Knowing how to handle crying is critical. It won’t happen often, but when it does, it could have a significant impact on your relationship with the individual. 

Here is a great article (Link) that provides amazing advice. Read it and remember it. When you have to deal with crying at work, you’ll be glad you did.

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