Almost all of us delude ourselves about workplace ambitions, visions, status, achievements and contributions. This is not necessarily a bad thing but it can mislead us, especially when it becomes a sing song for us to change. It is sometimes very challenging for high level executives to improve their interpersonal skills but when it comes to changing the way we interact with our peers, we fail to recognize the steps required for ongoing results. Part of this stems from healthy denial while part may be sheer ignorance.
We are only confronted with performance or promotional issues when we begin to open our minds to change. It could trigger emotional hot buttons of self interest but personal convictions and values must never be compromised for a some what majority take, because they may just want to distract you from those habits and trends that made you rack up achievements in the past or simply play on your psychology by making you believe you are not good enough. Many a times the overwhelming desire to run us down will bring these weak majority to make destructive comments on our personality using emotional volatility as a tool to make us act on anger.
Remedying them requires we acknowledge the breed of flaws centred on how we interact with them. We are not talking about deficiencies in skills or intelligence, neither are we talking of psychological medication and therapy, but the ability to refine our listening, encouraging, courageous, communicating, decisive, humble, empathic and trust worthy attributes. This will define us and connect us to the positive energy that needs to blend with ours, from within and without, to meet up with company standards and objectives.
This doesn't in anyway mean that we won't find distant, difficult and arrogant co workers who will sometimes make us feel we are stupid just because they want to feel even with our defining qualities or break our highly appreciated and inspired experience. Whatever the situation, we must deal with it from within. We are compelled to deal with the egregious annoyances that make the workplace substantially more toxic than necessary.If we can't interact with one another, then silence coupled to our smart and sufficient competencies, can be an option.
We should always go an extra mile in proactive strategies to discover what is wrong, identify the bad habits (if we are faulty and reproach our character in any way) and strive hard to change the scary behaviour. Marshall Goldsmith compiled the following list of negative habits after years of working with top executives in Fortune 500 companies in the United States of America. Some of the qualities cited are subtle , while others are glaringly obvious . Often, they may not appear to be harmful on the surface; in reality, they are valid detriments.
* Winning too much. The need to win at all cost and in every situation - when it matters and even when it doesn't , when its totally beside the point.
* Adding too much value. The overwhelming desire to add two cents to every discussion.
* Passing Judgement.The need to rate others and impose our standards on them.
* Making destructive comments. The needless sarcasm and cutting remarks that make us sound sharp and witty.
* Starting with'no', 'but' or however. The overuse of these negative qualifiers, which secretly convey to everyone, "I'm right. You're Wrong".
* Telling the World how smart we are. The need to show people we are smarter than they are or think we are.
* Speaking when we are angry. using emotional volatility as a management tool.
*Negativity. The need to share our negative thoughts, even when we haven't been asked to do so.
* Withholding information. The refusal to share information so we can maintain an advantage over others.
* Failing to give proper recognition. The inability to praise or reward.
* Claiming credit we do not deserve. The most annoying way to overestimate our contribution to any success.
* Making excuses. The need to re-position our annoying behaviour as a permanent fixture so people will excuse us for it.
* Clinging to the past. The need to deflect blame away from ourselves and unto events and people from our past; a subset of blaming everyone else.
* Playing favourites. Failing to see that we are treating someone unfairly.
* Refusing to express regret. The inability to take responsibility for our actions, admit we are wrong or recognise how our actions affect others.
* Not Listening. The most passive - aggressive form of disrespect for our colleagues.
* Failing to express gratitude. The most basic form of bad manners.
* Punishing the Messenger. The misguided need to attack the innocent who, usually, are only trying to help us.
* Passing the buck. The need to blame everyone but ourselves.
* An Excessive need to be 'me'. Exalting our faults as virtues, simply because they embody who we are.
There is however some good news for us if we identify with this group of scary behaviours because these bad habits are easy to break. We must always be mindful of the fact that the cure for failing to express gratitude is remembering to say, "Thank You".
For not apologising, we must learn to say, "I'm Sorry. I'll do better next time." And if we punished the messenger, let us imagine for seconds how we will feel if we were treated under similar circumstances. We must not talk at every given occasion, sometimes its an open trap to nails us with our words in the nearest future. For not listening, we should keep our mouths shut and open our ears wider. Most of us have a dire need to pass on an information on something we truly know little or nothing about, even when its not in our best interest. When we add value, pass judgement , announce that 'we are already in the know of a detail/fact' when we practically know nothing indeed, we are compulsively sharing information. When we fail to give recognition, claim credit we don't deserve, refuse to apologize or neglect to express gratitude, we are with-holding information. We could decide to unequivocally help another person to pass on the right information. When sharing these details, let us be mindful of two things:
- Is this appropriate?
- How much should I share?
It is very easy but it depends on our will and ability to nurture these seeds in us. And if everyone says we are wrong when we are deeply convinced of the virtue in our vision, lets remember what Christ went through to save us, yet we remain sinners in our acts (knowingly and unknowingly) and proceed with our innermost convictions. For if we allow fear (whose job is to keep us small, stuck and the same) to steal our joy of effectively transforming lives with our experience, then we were mistakes from the very on set.