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Dealing with Drama Dharma


Handle attention-seeking team members.

Attention-seeking behaviors don't always fade away with adolescence. Unfortunately, for some, the need to be noticed never dims. It's those team members who crave the spotlight that tend to be melodramatic.

It could be her second week at a clinic, when a client's cat passes away, and Drama Dharma would be crying hysterically as if she had known the pet its whole life. A Drama Dharma's the one who miraculously has every symptom of the patient she's treating. Or, perhaps your Dharma is more of an one-upper. You know, the person who brags about her son's gazillion medals at home when you mention your daughter's latest award.

In any case, there's only one way to handle these troubled team members, says Mandy Stevenson, RVT, Rolling Meadows Animal Hospital in Adrianne, Mo., and Firstline Editorial Advisory Board member. "You have to ignore their behavior," she says. "Otherwise it only furthers the drama."

The only times you should call co-workers out on their childish theatrics, Stevenson says, is when they're a problem for clients and productivity. Or, if they resort to rumors. "Gossip is unacceptable," she says.

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