**A Controlling Employee learns at an early age what works and how to control others.**
They may have been victims of other controllers and learned how to control through example, or grew up with caregivers, teachers and eventually bosses who did not understand how to manage their controlling tendencies and therefore inadvertently allowed their controlling nature to get out of hand. Either way, here you are in a workplace with a controlling employee that frankly may be causing you to lose sleep.
**Here is what does not work with a controlling employee and a few tips to manage this peace-of-mind squelching behavior.**
## Don’t Get Hooked on Their Statements
If someone is controlling towards you, it is obvious at one point they got the upper-hand over you in the course of working with them. Controlling people in the extreme can manifest bullying behavior, especially towards someone they perceive as being weak, someone they see as a threat, or someone who has criticized or questioned them.
**Instead, be in control of yourself**, make your own decisions, pick your own battles – do not allow anyone to put you on the spot. Do not pick a battle in front of others that you do not have 100% confidence you will win. That means if a controlling employee is rude to you in front of others, you have to change the game. Rehearse with someone (in management or outside the company) who does not get victimized by the controller to help you know how to respond and how to act in control.
## Don’t Get Sucked into Their Vortex
Controlling employees not only use fear and intimidation, they also operate from fear. They cause drama in others lives in order to allay their own fears of losing control.
**Instead become aware of the controller’s patterns**, what sets them off and how. Make sure you see their patterns clearly and don’t blame yourself for their problems. You will begin to learn what environmental things set them off as well as which individuals they target. The more uncomfortable and awkward someone is around the controller, the more likely they are to be controlled by them.
## Don’t Wear Velcro to Work
That means their actions and statements stick to you and glob up your cool, calm and collected thinking mechanism. People who struggle with controlling employees take everything the controller says personally. Controlling employees gain power over you when they sense you take their statement to heart. How do you know if you are wearing Velcro? What happens when you think of this person, do you become anxious, do you start running different scenarios in your head of how to defend yourself? If yes, you are wearing Velcro.
**Instead wear Teflon**, controllers can only control someone if they allow them. That means you realize this is how this person is, much like a hornet, they attack when bothered or when they feel like it, you already know that and find ways to work around them. If you get stung you don’t take it personally, you know it was the nature of the insect. If you look at a controller’s actions similarly, your Teflon will start working and will soon replace that sticky Velcro.
Controlling is usually a stress response of a specific behavior style or work personality – learn more about these in “Making Sense of Workplace Personalities”. Watch [Advisicon’s workshop listing](http://making-sense-of-workplace-personalities-blog.eventbrite.com) for the next workshop.
_May you always communicate with CLASS!_