Finally, consider other emotional responses besides anger and frustration. “If I weren’t angry, I would be . “ Resolved? Accepting? This is within your control, acknowledging that changing your response will take practice.
Assuming that you have a goal of successful partnership with your client, communication will be key. If you have regular status meetings, use one to ask if there have been some changes that you should know about. It’s appropriate to point out that there have been more last-minute requests and changes, and ask to discuss this so that you can provide the best possible service. Also, set up a process with him to get help prioritizing if needed. It’s much better to think these things through when you aren’t in the heat of the moment.
Your self-management tools come next. In terms of emotional reaction, identify some stress-lowering tactics you could use - humor, a quick walk, a brief venting or some deep breathing. Use these to prevent anger or frustration from dominating.
In terms of practical steps, use your planning skills to plan for the unexpected. Build some cushion into your daily schedule, or have in mind ways you could flex your work to adapt to changes.
Use your skills and manage your emotions so that you can have a positive work environment while giving your client good service.
Liz Reyer is a credentialed coach with more than 20 years of business experience. Her company, Reyer Coaching & Consulting, offers services for organizations of all sizes. Submit questions or comments about this column at www.deliverchange.com/coachscorner or email her at l lizdeliverchange.com.