Rephrase objections as polite questions
If an employee refuses to do work or argues with you, resist the urge to fight back by declaring “that’s unacceptable” or “you better shape up.” Instead, repeat what the person says in a nonthreatening tone. Better yet, rephrase it as a question. Example: A clerk says, “There’s no way I’ll do that! It’s Don’s job.” You respond in a neutral voice, “There’s no way you’ll do that?” This puts the burden back on the employee to reconsider his stance.