At the turn of the century, it used to be that employees learned they could get ahead at work if they checked their brains at the door. To get ahead, employees were encouraged merely to do as the employer dictated and not think while doing.
With the difficulties of today’s multi-technological work environment, employees can advance by checking their bad attitudes at the door and thinking positive.
We’ve gone from worker robotics, to worker neurotics. Workers must now transform themselves from reliance on their IQs to self-reliance on their EQ (emotional quotient). The quickest way to emotional intelligence is to learn to control one’s attitude.
What is attitude? Attitude is mood, behavior; it is the way that things get done. It is the spirit that underlies our behavior. It is the manner and feeling that is combined with our actions and the personality that defines who we are and what we do. While a good attitude implies a caring, positive and upbeat approach, a bad attitude is stained by uncaring, rude and negative behavior. Bad attitudes in an organization can become a cancer that can drive customers and good employees away. As employers continue their efforts to downsize, merge, and streamline costs — sped up by technology– employees are caught up in the emotional squeeze.
How do we change the attitudes of employees? By actually providing a training program for a team on attitudes is a perfect solution. The right training program can help foster a more positive work environment for all employees, increase employee morale, improve performance and productivity and place entrepreneurs in the frame of mind necessary to be successful.
Overcoming the first obstacle – is naming the training program. When you want to change a persons attitudes through training. It may be necessary to name the course and not including the word attitude so they will be excited and inspired to participate. Mandatory attitude training, for example, automatically causes resentment and resistance. Some individuals will say, I don’t have a bad attitude, why are they trying to change who I am, or what did I do wrong to have to participate in this program.? Like it or not, it is human nature to think the worst even when it comes to these kinds of programs. Seminar titles like, “How to Stay Motivated all the Time” or “How to Be Better in All that You Do”, work well.
It is helpful to take a measure of key attitudes that you want to change with the training. It is also useful to take the position that this effort is not just employee training for example, but long-term development, because you want to change behaviors in the long run. You will want to consider the existing state of the organization or your business that leads you to want to modify your employee attitude or even your own.
Consider asking the following questions?
- What behaviors are occurring that is suggestive of poor attitudes? Have you seen or experienced the following behaviors? Short tempers, poor customer treatment, or disrespectful treatment of others? A short survey (using a rating scale) of employees attitudes prior to training works well. Questions that relate to how they view their current surroundings and their own behaviors are two examples of questions for the survey. This same survey can be administered again several months after the training has been given to see what improvements have been made.
- What is the information should be provided in order to provide an effective attitudes training? – Individuals enjoy receiving information that is applicable to their whole lives, not just the workplace. Training should be interactive, hands-on, use everyday examples for learning, and focus on the individual and then the organization.
- Training objectives for participants:
- You may not like your job or others around you. You may not even be able to change your position at the present time. But the one thing you can change is your attitude.
- You may not be able to control your feelings but you can control your attitude. Attitude management is the ability to control how we act out our emotions.
Some useful elements of an effective attitudes training program include:
- Self-assessment and personal inventory- which include personal assessment of how well an employee feels they interact with others inside and outside of the work environment
- Developing Personal Effectiveness- which include opportunities for participants to visualize success and their own capacities and abilities, to strengthen inner resources and mental attitude
- Assessing Limitations and Strengths – which include taking a realistic look at limitations and strengths and assess opportunities to capitalize on personal strengths. Identify those limitations that may not be rooted in fact but affect individuals capability to fully contribute, create or apply skills.
- Understanding the Dynamics of Positive and Negative Attitudes-which include developing an understanding the relationship between thoughts and actions.
- Transition and Change Model – Incorporate a process to help individual employees identify attitudes they want to change and timetable that will let them transition plan.
- Lasting change – Can be accomplished if we give individuals adequate time to adopt new attitudes, positive rewards and celebrations for demonstrating positive behaviors. Using the measurement tool to conduct a post assessment of training impact and rewarding participants for positive change will be reinforcing.
True empowerment is the ability to take control and avoid emotional responses to aggressive work environments. Staying optimistic and positive are challenges that we all face. Attitude management is crucial for efficiency development. Grasping the ability to keep a positive attitude will attract others and keep you motivated to achieve.