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The 2012 Workplace Diet for Anyone Who Leads Others
Leadership expert shares weighty tips to get bosses and organizations in better health in 2012
By: Megan Ross
“The Workplace Diet is designed to help leaders conquer employee confusion, apathy, lack of motivation, and the increasing cost of ineffective communication,”
The Grossman Group’s data and work with employees show that bosses are the preferred source for information about job-related activities, and are the most influential in “making the weather” for their employees. As such, bosses have the greatest opportunity to create better working environments for employees today.
“If every boss would work on these skills, we'd have less BS and more humanity in the workplace, which employees deserve,” Grossman says. “Business results will follow – making leaders and employees both happier and more productive.”
Here’s the skinny on The Grossman Group 2012 Workplace Diet:
• Share expectations – People rise to the expectations set for them. Leaders need to create a list of expectations and share them with staff. Be as specific as possible to enable employee understanding. When expectations are met, reinforce the positive behavior. Otherwise, give feedback and suggest alternative behaviors.
• Plan communications – Planned communication strategies are more purposeful and measurably more effective.
• Ask for input and feedback – Ask open-ended questions, such as: “Help me understand how you are thinking about this?” or “What ideas do you have to resolve this?”
• Listen more – Stop talking so much. Listen to what employees have to say and act on their recommendations. Try to reduce the amount you talk by at least 25 percent.
• Take action on employee suggestions – Act on the input you get. Whether you implement a suggestion or not, close the loop with employees so they know their input was valued. They’ll be more likely to share their thoughts with you in the future.
• Show you care – Find out what’s important to employees on a personal level and remember that information.
• Empathize (more) – Learn how to make a reflective statement, which validates someone else’s feelings and shows thoughtfulness.
• Share recognition and appreciation – Say “thank you” for a job well done with specific details about the positive performance. Reinforce good behaviors.
• Ensure employees can articulate how they fit in – All employees want to know that they’re contributing to something larger than themselves. Talk with employees to ensure they can articulate how they specifically contribute to the overall goals of the organization.
• Measure efforts – Use in-house tools such as a 360-degree or employee engagement surveys to get data on what’s working and what’s not. Alternatively, leaders should ask staff: “What two to three things can I do this year to make me more effective in how I communicate with you?”
Grossman will examine each of the Workplace Diet steps in more detail each month in 2012 on his blog (www.yourthoughtpartner.com/
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About The Grossman Group (www.yourthoughtpartner.com)
Led by David Grossman, founder, CEO, and author of the highly-acclaimed books, You Can’t Not Communicate: