There will always be instances when The Prima Donna Syndrome rears its ugly head especially in blogger organizations where there is diversity in the group members.
In a business owner perspective, if you want to build a relationship with a blogger in order to woo them and their audience to become champions of their products, you are in for a tough ride when dealing with Prima Donnas.
From a post in Work Through, “Prima Donna” (Italian for Leading lady) and Diva are terms originally used to describe the temperamental and demanding tendencies of Opera stars, the rock stars of the 18th through the early 20th centuries. The music may have changed but these demanding tendencies flourish in every medium and genre.
“Why deal with them in the first place?”
Sometimes, you don’t get to choose the people you work with. It’s just like when you are student in college and your professors “randomly” picks out and organizes groups. And when you end up with people that you don’t really want to work with, especially Prima Donnas, it’s about time you whip out your checklist of “how to deal with this shit” or leave the group (or organization). Like, leave.
“Really? So why don’t YOU just leave?”
Well first of all, if you chose to be a part of a group, you have a responsibility to them. You are obliged to do something and deal with the groups problems. I chose to be a part of these groups so I feel obligated. As Seth Godin points out — “Once you’ve engaged with an organization or a relationship or a community, you owe it to your team to start.” Of course, you also owe it to them to finish.
I might leave soon but hell it’s too interesting to know how a story turns out. Like you want to buy yourself some soda and popcorn to watch the rumored super awesome ending of a thriller movie. Yeah, it kinda feels like that.
The Signs of a Prima Donna Blogger
1. “I’m better than everyone else (and my shit doesn’t stink).”
This blogger thinks he’s better than everyone else, and everyone else should cater to his/her every whim. His Alexa Rank is XXX. His PR is greater than 10. Hell, he can even compete by making the next Facebook.
He/She flaunts high profile event invites and makes sure everyone knows knows about it – online or offline. There is nothing terribly wrong about this since that is the point of inviting him to events right? So you can get the word out about events through him.
But because of such attitude, you might find these Prima Donnas ignoring pleas for support or calls for them to join events that do not have any incentive at all. If your business has a specific event where the blogger is a perfect audience, they won’t join if they know you did not invite the other Prima Donna bloggers in his network or if they know that you invited the other bloggers who are not in his league.
This behavior has an effect on the morale of a group is destructive to the organization as a whole. The blogger must understand that you won’t have the performance of the entire group undermined by such behavior.
So how do you deal with them?
Flattery. Would this work? I think so. As the Work Through post pointed out — This is why the stereotyped Hollywood agent or band manager is always doling out flattery — to try to get their Prima Donna stars into a mood where they are all happy and purring so something can get done.
Ignore them. It is time consuming enough to deal with them. The best way would be to let them wallow on their narcissism. What you can do so as not to waste your time is to provide better products or services that merits their precious attention. If you are an officer in an org, just do your work for the group regardless if they think they’re better than you.
2. “No, that’s not good enough.”
Nothing you do is ever enough for the Prima Donna; there is always more that should be done simply because he/she deserves it.
You approach him with a blog review offering a small incentive of $5 for the effort and he sticks his nose up in the air pretending to be all kingly. Hell, he won’t even join your raffle promotion because the prize is just 5,000php of which he earns with just one day from Adsense.
Everyone is a narcissist at some point, I agree. But, like sex and magic, too much of a good thing is vile. A hard-core pathological narcissist blogger is really vile. Why? He can ruin your online reputation by posting on his blog and announcing to his “fans” — OMG, Company XXX wants me to write for them for just $5?? Wa sila mabuyong?
So, how do you deal with them?
Find another blogger. There will always be newbie bloggers who are more for the learning than the money. When bloggers get to the point of being too uberly famous that they don’t give a shit about your innovative, highly creative product because you won’t pay them $100 per post, you ought to be looking else where.
3. “I’m never wrong.”
The Prima Donna blogger can do no wrong. He makes sure you know that.
He brings his other blogger friends when the RSVP clearly stated it’s good for one. He wears jeans in events that are supposed to be formal gatherings. He deliberately forgets to write post-event articles just because he’s too tired to do so. And remember, he isn’t wrong.
So how do you deal with them?
Sage advice — Know when you’ve had enough. Decide how far you’re willing to go to accommodate the Prima Donna, and don’t go beyond it.You go with two options: show your rage or show your cool.
Rage is a good sign you’re at your limit. It may help to get your point across but it will be a good means.
Or you can just act cool. Don’t argue with their tantrums. Just shrug and let the prima donna blogger know it won’t work on you.
What about you? How do you deal with prima donna bloggers?