copy paste from here
How to Deal with Arrogance
Out of all the difficult behaviors we can think of arrogant people win the prize. They know exactly how to ask a
question, sigh or even look at us in a way that makes us feel like we’re nothing. What’s worse, they seem to be at
their peak in group settings. They tend to use public forums to make a joke at our expense or to overpower us when
we try to make a point. What’s going on with these people? And more importantly, how do we deal with them?
First, understand that behind every superiority complex is one emotion: Fear. What are arrogant people afraid of?
Everything. People who seem full of themselves are insecure and they compensate by bragging and overpowering.
They make others feel bad in order to make themselves feel better. Arrogant people suffer most from the number
two fear in America (second only to death): Rejection. Beneath the surface they are afraid that people will find out
they are not brilliant, wonderful and talented. The irony is that in truth they may be all of these things, but they don’t,
in their hearts, believe it.
Think about a person you know who is confident (not arrogant). Does this person have to tell you four times a day
how smart she is? Does she overpower others? Does she make others feel stupid? On the contrary, confident
people empower others because they feel comfortable with themselves. So, now that we know why people are
arrogant, it’s time to deal with them. Here are a few strategies for you to try:
You can start with the open-close approach. This is a simple, non-combative tactic for drawing attention to the
problem. Let’s say a colleague takes a cheap shot at you in the presence of others. Turn to him and ask him an
open-ended question in a level, inquisitive tone: “What do you mean by that?” This question forces him to explain his
behavior. Sit quietly and wait for his response. He’ll probably say it was just a joke or try to further the attack. Note
that in doing so, his inappropriate behavior will become apparent to everyone else in the room. At this point be clear
with what you want by making a closed statement in one sentence. “I think that’s inappropriate, and I hope you’ll
refrain from comments like that.” Then move on. This gives him no room to respond, but clearly shows him and
everyone else in the room what you want. Do not worry about seeming tough to everyone else in the room. People
do not have to like you; they have to respect you.
For a more direct approach try the searchlight. This should only be done in private, and you want to make sure that
you are in a neutral place, like the office conference room, or even outside of the office in a quiet café. Start by
explaining that you think there is tension in the relationship and you want to clear it up. Ask open ended questions
and try to get to the heart of the matter. He may not admit that there’s a problem or be honest about his feelings, but
try to listen between the lines. If he says something like “you take everything too seriously” understand that he may
simply be on the defensive and that your way of reacting may heighten his fears. Ask him for examples and specific
suggestions on how to improve the dynamic. If he refuses to be forthcoming, you can ask him to refrain from
behaviors that offend you. Remember to document the entire conversation when it’s over; you made need if for this
Plan B is not a pretty tactic, but sometimes it’s all you’ve got. It’s a public and private one-two punch. This is when
you give an ultimatum in private and you refuse to accept inappropriate behavior in public. Every time you get that
smirk, interruption or overpowering comment, call him on it using words like “unacceptable” or “unprofessional.” Do
not ask a question or give him the opportunity to respond. If he makes an embarrassing comment, look at him and
say, “That is completely unprofessional.” One sentence is enough. Don’t argue; just move on. Then privately
address him, letting him know that you are documenting his behavior and will go above his head with the information
if he continues. This approach will make the relationship tense, but it will probably get him to back down. If you feel
apprehensive about using this tactic, try to remember that time when you stood up to the bully in the play ground.
Only then did you realize how afraid he was to fight.
No matter which approach you choose remember one thing: You can control how arrogant people impact you. To
quote Eleanor Roosevelt, “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” No one can make you feel
anything for that matter. So, try to focus on the fact that arrogance is the other person’s problem, fear, and envy --
and thankfully, not yours.
well said it! :D