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Conflicts between people at the workplace, unnecessary interpersonal friction, and negative attitudes are run-of-the-mill challenges posed by negativity, which near about every HR professional has to deal with on a regular basis. However, in many cases, many HR leaders are always on the lookout for better solutions to manage or circumvent the negativity that may trickle into their teams. A negative mindset that begins with just one team member can easily spread throughout the team, department, or even the whole organization, if not corrected in a quick and efficient manner. When negativity becomes prevalent throughout the organization, HR leaders may notice any or all of the following:
In the face of negativity, an HR leader's goal is not to remove all negative feelings and thoughts from the workplace. There are a few differentiating factors between “good” negative thoughts and “bad” negative thoughts. The kind of negativity that only focuses on problems and challenges, while doing nothing to assist in avoiding or getting rid of such challenges is "bad" negativity. On the flip side, having team members who effectively play “Devil’s Advocate” can bring potential problems or new ideas to the fore. This "negative analysis" can then be used to identify challenges and find efficient ways to counter them. This can also help improve leadership skills and develop a productive workforce.
Minor conflicts and some amount of negativity are common to all organizations. However, when these problems spiral out of control, they often affect teams immensely. Hence, it is always a good idea to constantly be vigilant for signs of consistent negativity at the workplace before the organization is affected by reduced morale, low productivity, higher stress levels, interpersonal friction and attrition. Here are a few of the most common signs that negativity is becoming a chronic challenge that needs quick redressal:
When a team member consistently shows pessimistic, hostile, negative or uncooperative behaviour, they may need guidance. Here are some ways to help such employees develop a more positive and productive mindset.
Dictating the “correct” answer to a problem can lead to team members accusing you if a solution doesn’t work, or they may even feel “coerced” into agreeing with your ideas.
A negative mindset is detrimental to the productivity of teams at the workplace. However, using the strategies above, HR leaders address the challenges put forth by negativity and improve morale and productivity at the workplace. Using positive communication methods can help create a winning environment that benefits the workforce and the organization in the process, while aiding your employees in staying mentally fit and happy with proper support.
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