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I was just about to start writing when my kitten flopped onto my keyboard and fell asleep, causing my heading to become a crazy mishmash of letters and symbols. Of course, I couldn’t move her, she seemed so comfortable. I’m sure that even if a small child had done the same (well maybe not flopping onto the keyboard and falling asleep), I would’ve smiled and let it go. Little hands (and paws) are capable of causing all sorts of nonsense!

If a work colleague had taken over my work space without permission, how irritated I would have been. There are people who behave like that; I’ve come across the sort - they are usually the same people who state the obvious, instructing you to do something when you’re already on the case.

What people related challenges do you face at work?

There is always a certain amount of complaining to be made by some clients, in any environment, and no doubt some pet owners have their moments of frustration, for their own reasons, and if you happen to be seated at the Practice reception desk, I imagine any negativity from unhappy clients is unleashed your way for you to bear the brunt.

Training courses are available to teach us how to remain calm in these situations; to listen to the customer, show empathy, and then to finally have your say which will be to agree with everything they’ve said.

I have a short list of my very own advice to give out for awkward client situations:
  1. Always make eye contact with the person who is disgruntled, it shows honesty and transparency;
  2. ‘Listen to your breath’ (if you practice yoga or meditate you will be familiar with this breathing exercise). Once mastered, it can put you in a very calm state of mind; and lastly
  3. Smile… but perhaps not while your client is in the full throws of their rant – only once you’ve ‘listened’ and are ready to respond.