Put simply, all employees are not happy to be at work every day. Whether it is stress from family or the fact that the weather is too nice to focus on work, certain circumstances can crush employee morale. Minimizing employee negativity is essential to maintaining productivity and ensuring a successful team. This post will discuss ways to overcome negativity at work.
- Don’t personalize their negativity.
When listening to negative individuals it is important not to take what they say personally. Negative people are negative about everyone. Don’t be defensive or overreact to their drama. This will lead to a confrontation where the negative individual will feel like they won because they provoked an emotional response. Rather, provide constructive and positive responses to their negative behavior.
- Use “I” rather than “You.”
Negative people feel more defensive when they are called out for their behavior. For instance when you say “Why would you think you could barge into my office without knocking?” they return with more negativity to justify their position. Rather, turn the statement around to reflect your feelings and not invalidate theirs. “I get lost in my work and get easily startled when the door opens unexpectedly. Could you please knock?”
- Constructively manage anger.
Most negative behavior stems from anger. It is important to know some techniques and skills to handle individuals who are angry. Remain calm and continue to breathe easily. When you show signs of anger or anxiety it can cause the situation to worsen. Listen to what they have to say without commentary and process the information before responding. Apologize but don’t assign blame and offer real constructive solutions. For instance, “I am very sorry this has affected you this way. Let’s look at how we can make a correction so it can be easier in the future.”
- Replace negative statements with positive ones.
Often, those who focus on negative situations will respond to everything in this manner. For instance, during an accounting department meeting they may describe all the ways the new software doesn’t work for them. Use this same information to counter them by describing the benefits of the new software and how to effectively use it in the future.
Are you interested in learning techniques to deal with negativity in your office? Contact the team at HTSS to learn more today!