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Part: I An Aggressive Species > Watch Out for the Eggshells

Chapter 2. Watch Out for the Eggshells

With some people you feel like you're walking on eggshells. Often they're very creative, dramatic, or outgoing, and can be very charming and fun to be with. They can be great idea people, enthusiastic salespeople, and dynamic bosses. But they are also very sensitive to potential slights, and they can erupt into tirades or a sullen silence if you say or do the wrong thing to set them off. The experience is like working with a Roman candle that has a short fuse. Or you feel like you are walking through a field of eggshells, and breaking one can be especially dangerous if the problem is with a boss, client, or project team leader.

That's what happened to Andy, an advertising account manager, when he worked with Cynthia, a VP and product manager for an important client. Things could be going along swimmingly, but suddenly, he would get on Cynthia's nerves, and she would erupt and let him have it. At first, Andy wasn't sure exactly what he did to set her off, though he desperately wanted to avoid doing whatever it was, because he was concerned his agency might lose the account or maybe he might get canned himself.


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