Negativity is the number one productivity problem in the workplace. Signs of negativity include backstabbing, gossiping, power struggles and lack of teamwork. The end result is absenteeism, low morale and turnover. Here are seven tips for improving workplace relationships and reducing negativity.
1. Facilitate Regular Staff Meetings
When done properly, regular meetings provide a forum for listening, problem-solving and honoring peak performance. Meeting mistakes include lecturing instead of engaging the team, inconsistent meeting times, no agenda, and no fun.
2. Institute a DRAMA-Free Workplace
Make relationships a priority and support the relationships with a standard operating procedure and employee manual. Review at least once a year and let the rules be the “bad guy” when it comes to discipline.
3. Eliminate the Open Door Policy
The door should only be open during specific hours and preferably by appointment. This prevents casual visits to vent or tattle.
4. Stop Office Gossip
Sally comes to you and says, “Don’t tell Donna, I said this, but Donna is unhappy with…” Discourage hearsay with a calm question, “Why are you coming to me with Donna’s problem?” Send the message you do not tolerate “rescuing” behavior.
5. Teach Problem-Solving
When an employee comes to you with a complaint, acknowledge the complaint, then schedule the employee to come back with all the facts, and an idea or potential solution.
6. Require Rejuvenation
No rest and recovery equals irritability, impatience, rude behavior and more mistakes. Managing energy is crucial to peak performance and productivity. Make regular breaks mandatory at least every two hours if possible.
7. Be the Change You Wish To See
Master your communication and relationship skills. Set the example: Master your emotions, be fair, listen, have integrity, show respect and have fun. Remember the words of William Penn: “No man is fit to command another who cannot command himself.”
Go to www.stopyourdrama.us to get a more in depth discussion of the 7 Ways to Stop Workplace Drama.