We have all most likely experienced negativity in the workplace and how it can be really toxic, affecting motivation, engagement, creativity, create disruption and be down right uncomfortable! The problem is, how do you proactively and constructively deal with it before it becomes a HUGE problem and even spreads to influence your employees and colleagues? Let’s explore potential reasons behind negativity in the work place and how you can try and help someone out who is experiencing it and create your own ‘no negativity zone’ and keep those happy and zen vibes flowing! Let’s break it down…
Recognising negativity in your work space, taking charge and handling it properly is an absolute must for the well being of your team and fellow work friends! It can be easier said then done and is often a delicate subject that needs to be handled with care. So how do you confront it and protect yourself from being influenced by it and create your own ‘no negativity zone’? And we don’t mean having a bad day – this is part and parcel of work life and happens to all of us. We’re talking about a pattern of behaviour that is consistent and rain, hail or shine your co-worker seems to always see the downside.
First of all, let’s do a quick assessment on what is really going on….
What is actually causing these negative vibes from a co-worker? Is there a particular issue, situation or even daily task or responsibility that is triggering it or encouraging it?
Is the negativity coming from a dissatisfaction in their role or with the business?
Is it related to another team member, manager or customer?
How frequent is it, regular, now and then or once every blue moon?
Once we know this, think of how to approach the person in the best way that works with their personality and what they will respond to best.
Here are some tips for that sometimes difficult and awkward conversation to makes things easier for everyone!
- Find the Root Causes (we’ve pretty much covered that first up)
- Listen – don’t assume. Let them speak, be fair, and try to get them to see the facts rather than emotion. Acknowledge what they say, but do not encourage or enable negativity!
- Calmly confront the negative behaviour in a constructive way
- Break the problem down into bite sized pieces
- Have an open mind
- Don’t participate. If you hear someone speaking negatively, don’t participate in the conversation
- Work towards a resolution
- Counteract negativity with positivity
- Don’t do nothing – in most sitations it wont fix itself but will only get worse. Confront it, work through it and move on, because aint no body got time for negativity (work is challenging enough right?!)
The most important thing – educate, don’t criticize. Too often our reaction to seeing or experiencing a negative or unfavorable behavior is to do one of two things – ignore it or complain about it. How do you effectively confront and handle negativity in you work space LIKE A BOSS?!