Few things ruin productivity as quickly as negativity. It affects more than just the negative individual, and if it is not controlled, it can disrupt the entire office. Negativity can arise from feelings of frustration, coworkers’ disputes and issues altogether unrelated to the office environment. While it usually cannot be halted completely, there are ways to reduce the amount of negativity in your office. Take a look at some of the most effective ways for reducing negativity your workplace below:
Make it a place people want to work
People spend a significant amount of their time at work. If your office is not a place that is accommodating or comfortable, your employees may start to resent their time there. Make sure your business has an employee break room and a space where workers can decompress during the day. If there is nowhere for them to take a moment away from their work, it could lead to negativity-breeding stress. Additionally, your office should host events outside the workday so that your coworkers can get to know one another in a social setting. You may also find it helpful to provide your workers with comfortable, health-conscious furniture, as discomfort can also turn to negativity.
Don’t just listen to problems; correct them
As a business leader, your workers will feel inclined to bring their problems to you for resolution. It is your responsibility to hear them out. However, you must do more than simply listen to their problems. You must take action. Whenever an employee addresses an issue with you, it can be helpful to ask them what they would like to see done. You can incorporate the employee’s suggestion into your resolution, making it clear that the business’ success is a team effort.
One major source of negativity is poor communication. If employees feel like they are being ignored or information is being withheld from them, it can stir up ill feelings. Always make sure to communicate any important changes within your organization. You should make sure these messages are clear and concise, and you should be prepared to respond to any replies on internal questions. It can also be helpful for managers to hold weekly meetings where they outline the week’s goals, ask for feedback from their teams and try to iron out any unresolved issues.
Reward positive behavior
Positivity is not always easy to come by in an office setting, especially in high pressure industries. However, people will take notice if you reward workers who make the effort to avoid negativity. For example, if an individual takes a moment to acknowledge the skills or successes of a coworker in a meeting or an email, you could reward that employee with an extra half day of paid time off. If one of your team leaders is doing an excellent job pulling his or her team through a difficult project, you could host a luncheon for the whole group. Small gestures that allow you to recognize positive behavior in the workplace can go a long way for encouraging others to let go of their negativity.
Negativity is a poisonous thing that can infect your office. By knowing how to reduce it, you can prevent it from greatly impacting your employees and their workflow.
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