Negativity in the Workplace Part 2: Opportunities to Strengthen Your Team and Your Business

In a recent article here on the blog, we discussed the three confrontation steps you can take to turn negativity into a growth opportunity for you and your team. Along the way, we also discovered a number of key practices you can adopt for you and your team to foster an environment that turns negativity and in opportunities to grow together as an organization – take a look at some of these best practices:

•    Celebrate your wins
Any time your team gets a win (something as small as earning a certification or award, or receiving a glowing review from a customer) – celebrate it! This can be as simple as sending a congratulatory memo out to your team

•    3,2,1 – 1,2,3
When someone approaches you with negativity try the 3,2,1 – 1,2,3 technique: have them focus on the three worst things confronting them, then the two worst, and finally the absolute worst. This allows them to focus on the issues at hand. Then, have them focus on one great aspect of their life, then two and finally three.

•    Have your negative employees record themselves talking when they’re in a bad mood
As many don’t realize how they sound when they’re being negative, this can be a humbling and private way for them to understand the problem their actions may be causing

•    “Eliminate the Dumb Things”
Foster an environment where anyone can openly call out company policies that do not help your organization thrive and grow or reach your goals. The key here is ensuring that your employees feel safe to address things they find don’t help the business in any way – if there’s even any doubt, the issues will continue to go unaddressed

•    Don’t issue a company-wide rule that only applies to a few people
Larger teams and organizations will have different departments with different requirements from their employees. If one particular department is required to adhere to a certain set of policies because of the nature of their job, don’t force this policy on the rest of your organization if it’s unnecessary.

•    Inform your team of shifting priorities
There are few things more frustrating than spending hours on a project that is suddenly deemed unnecessary due to changing priorities. Priorities do indeed change – and when they do, ensure your team knows about them – this will save you all inefficient uses of time and undue headaches.

•    Don’t punish your excellent performers and reward the poorer ones
It sounds silly but consider this: you may be doing it every day and not even realizing it when, for instance, you reward your top performers with more work. That’s not rewarding for them, that’s continually increasing the burden they have to bare. As is the unwillingness for some managers to promote their key players for fear of losing their presence on the team. On the other end of the spectrum, you give your under-performers less work and consider promoting them just to have them off your team. This creates a mindset to your key performers that they can receive the same pay and do less work by decreasing their effort.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *