Ask Alignor

What should I do if someone gets emotional when dealing with me?

It can be difficult enough to manage your own emotions in negotiations. When you have to deal with someone else’s emotions, you should be careful and thoughtful, especially if you have an ongoing relationship with the other person. As a general rule, you should avoid responding to your counterpart’s emotional outburst with an emotional outburst of your own. Try to stay calm and strategic in determining the best course of action. Consider taking a break if the other person seems unable to control their emotions. This can give everyone time and space to calm down. If possible, try to figure out why the other person is becoming so emotional in your dealings. For example, is there something else going on in that person’s life unrelated to your dealings with him?