Pop quiz: what’s the first thing that comes to mind when you think of your employees?
Pain-in-the-neck? Burdensome? Constant source of aggravation? Bunch of whiners? Lazy? Unmotivated?
Or: Pleasure to work with. Eager beavers. Full of good ideas. Helpful, cooperative.
Probably a mix of both. Hopefully with more of the “pleasure to work with” thoughts than the “pain-in-the-neck” variety.
But here’s the thing: people can sense what your attitude is towards them. And when you look at an employee and think “pain-in-the-neck,” that employee may not know precisely what you’re thinking, but he or she can indeed feel that they are somehow disapproved of. Which in turn greatly diminishes their desire to do a good job, or improve present performance.
Does this mean you have to like all your employees? Heavens, no! But it does mean that your focus on whatever you can appreciate, what you can value, about each and every one of your employees, will have significant impact on how they respond to you.
Make the effort to find one thing you can value about every single one of your employees. Then focus your attention more on that attribute, skill or quality, than on whatever it is you don’t appreciate.
You’ll find that even your “pain-in-the-neck” employees will begin to show improvement, and your “pleasure to work with” ones will positively shine.