Dealing with Nasty Joe: Step Back and Take a Deep Breath

“Nasty Joe” is an extremely angry person. You know the type, he’s not happy unless he’s embroiled in an ugly battle. Joe will always point the finger at others, engage in loud, vicious and profane verbal attacks and will never ever back down. He is a master at drawing people into a battle, because he knows he will always win and it fuels his fire.     

Unfortunately, Nasty Joe sometimes lives in a homeowners’ association. If you have encountered a Nasty Joe – you know it’s a no-win situation. These people take great satisfaction in targeting professional staff and members of an association’s board of directors. For these angry people, there’s nothing better than violating covenants and making life a misery for everyone involved.

 

Here are some tips for dealing with a Nasty Joe:

 

  1. Do not take Nasty Joe’s bait. Nasty Joe is going to do everything he can to drag you into a verbal altercation with him. While it is human nature to be offended and to defend yourself, the worst thing you can do is get into a fight with Nasty Joe. Your anger is a precious gift to these dysfunctional people. Remember there is nothing you can say to reason with Nasty Joe and there is no possibility that you will be able to reach a mutually acceptable understanding. As a result, take a deep breath and walk away.   
  1. Defuse encounters with Nasty Joe. When you have an encounter with Nasty Joe, it’s important to stay calm.  Do not let your emotions get out of control and do not cry.  Attempt to ignore the individual. If that isn’t possible, find something positive to say and even praise Nasty Joe. Being positive with these people will make them uncomfortable and may even disarm them.

 

  1. Deal with Nasty Joe in Writing. Since constructive in-person communications with Nasty Joe are impossible, handle your business with him in writing. Keep your communications to the point and professional. Do not fall into the trap of engaging in a written battle with him. Since Nasty Joe loves nothing more than an email war, it’s also recommended that you send communications via snail mail.

If all of these tips fail, think about using legal counsel to handle communications with Nasty Joe. This tactic will insulate professional staff and the board from his abuse. 

 

Do you have experience in dealing with a Nasty Joe? If so, please share your thoughts on how to effectively deal with these people.