In a past post, Do You Ever Feel Fear At Work? I looked at how feeling fear can be a destructive force. The flip side is if we, as managers, create fear in others. For me, creating fear serves no good purpose. It is effective for some in maintaining control but, essentially, it is bullying that has no place in our workplaces.
Good managing involves building a team, not breaking people down. How do managers create fear in others? They create an environment of insecurity, where team members do not know where they stand and feel their position is tenuous. They threaten people, subtly or overtly. They let their emotions run wild, intimidating others. They create uncertainty, without providing leadership.
Do you think you create fear in others? Is it intentional? Could you be creating fear subconsciously? It takes courage to manage openly, respecting others and maintaining your and their integrity. Do you have the courage to eliminate fear from your workplace?
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In our world today, force is often equated with power. I’m not so sure they are the same. Force is defined as coercion or compulsion. Power is defined as the capacity or ability to direct or influence the behavior of others or the course of events. In managing, there is merit in distinguishing between the two and in going for power rather than force.
You can see the difference, I’m sure. If you look at your style as a manager or professional, do you lean more toward force or power? Force involves pushing. Power involves directing or influencing. The experiences and responses of those on the receiving ends of force and power are markedly different. Cultivate your power as a manager or professional. It will far out-distance the use of force.
How about your workplace? Do you see more use of power or force?
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As I was writing my last blog post about being “hooked” by emotional issues that come up when you are coaching someone, I thought that it is not just during coaching that emotions can hook us.
How often are your emotions present during your workday? Once emotions are present they can hook you, leading possibly to losing your center, reacting in an inappropriate way or taking offense. Emotional self-awareness is called for to avoid emotional hooks. Emotions can be a runaway train, but when you are aware and in the driver’s seat you can manage your emotions and avoid being “hooked”.
Have any emotions hooked you this week?
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Judgment comes naturally. It is an important ability when it comes to your own actions. Judgment of others, however, is a different thing. The judgments you make of others inform the actions you take and the strategies you develop. They had better be accurate.
Limited information, ignited emotions and internal biases can easily skew your judgments of other people and situations. Judgments must be seen for what they are; they are not facts, but your perception. Exercising caution and diligence in your judgment of others can serve you well.
Keep your judgments of others as objective as you can. Get the facts that are available, make them from a centered place and do not confuse them with truth. Judgments have their own power and are best arrived at carefully.
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Stubborn: having or showing dogged determination not to change one’s attitude or position on something, especially in spite of good arguments or reasons to do so.
What’s the impact of stubbornness in the workplace? Stubbornness slows things down. It causes arguments and clashes. But stubbornness does not always exist in the face of good arguments or reasons. Sometimes, stubbornness is due to the courage of a person’s convictions or fault lines that exist in others’ arguments or reasoning.
Are you stubborn? How do you respond to the stubbornness of others? An accusation of stubbornness can be subjective, as who is to say whether one’s attitude or position goes against reason or facts? Perhaps the best way to deal with stubbornness in yourself or others is to ignore its presence and continue on to the center of an issue by keeping dialogue going and working to understand others’ positions. Stubbornness is an obstacle you are better off without.
photo: Zozifoto | Dreamstime.com
Values guide us in many areas of our lives. What are your values as a manager? Here are some questions to help you begin identifying them.
• How would you like for others to describe you as a manager?
• What is important to you regarding the way others treat you in the workplace or market?
• Which of your personal values transfer to your work as a manager? How are they different, if at all, when you bring them into the workplace?
• What kind of work environment do you want to create for your team?
Values are an important foundation for your work as a manager. Know your values. Let them guide you