- Business and Employment»
- Character & Professionalism
How Do I Know What People at Work Think of Me?
Let your coworkers care about you and you care about them
Have you ever wondered what your colleagues or team members really felt or think about you? The individual worker at any company spends a considerable amount of time with these folks. You know about their kids, grandkids and more through small talk. Lots of times they even over share and admit clearly very personal things. These comments shape private viewpoints and opinions in your mind concerning each one. What do you imagine they think of you?
Many managers or leaders want their colleagues or team members to like them personally as well as respect them professionally and speculate whether or not they do.
Human nature makes us all want to be liked or accepted for who we are. Many people spend more time with the people they work with day in and day out than their own families. Believe it or not when it comes to your career, being liked will always help you succeed more than being competent at the job you do. People that are liked by their coworkers will make more money and be promoted more often than those that aren’t.
Therefore, if you are concerned with the company bottom line, meeting company and team goals besides caring about the quality of your work, you better care about whether or not you are liked by your coworkers in order to succeed.
Coworkers will rarely tell you what they actually think or feel about you. There are ways to read behavior and determine what lies beneath their sunny smile. These are signs to read in order to know what they really think of you and how to change their thoughts or mindset;
You haven’t apologized for some time, correct that
Saying you’re sorry at least once a week means that you are honest about mistakes or errors you have made. People don’t like it when you aren’t honest. Don’t wait until you have made a mistake the size of an elephant to apologize one. Make apologies for the little mistakes along with the big ones.
Apologizing for the small mistakes that you make says a couple of things about you;
· You are human and not putting yourself above the rest of the staff
· You care about the feelings of others and don’t intentionally make their life more difficult than it needs to be
If you are not saying you are sorry, you can count on your people or staff hating you.
An apology doesn’t necessarily have to be a 30 minute speech. However, it does need to be sincere. Never begin your apology with “I’m sorry, but….” Body language in addition to your tone says a lot when someone has an apology to make.
If colleagues argue with you often-you are in trouble
Believe it or not this may be a mixed bag of nuts. There are healthy arguments and there are some workers that simply love to keep things stirred up. For those pot stirrers that keep negative gossip going and are always negative, don’t take them into consideration for your evaluation of whether or not coworkers enjoy your company. For those that argue points with well thought out deliberation tactics, strategies or questions-this is a good thing.
People that argue with you mean that they care about issues. Some arguments in the workplace can be healthy. People care about the outcome and are concerned with what is going on around the workplace.
Without pushback on something at least once a week you have workers that simply don’t care about their work or are under-invested in the outcome. They don’t care about anything coming down the pipeline or how it affects work around them and they definitely don’t care about you.
Show people you care about their opinion and have empathy for their concerns. Admitting an issue has some rough edges or you may agree with some valid points they have made will show coworkers that you care about them and make them feel they are part of a team with a leader that cares about what they have to say. You don’t necessarily have to act upon their suggestions, but if they provide useful or valuable input, by all means use it.
Being great at the details is a downfall
A great manager isn’t great at the details; he or she is great at the people. This doesn't mean you have to be sloppy at your work. You can be average on the details and great on the people and be very well liked and successful. If you are great at the details and suck at the people, there is a guarantee no one will like you.
Managers that care about the details more than people will fail. Management is about people. You have to be capable of trusting people to do their job which will earn and gain you a form of trust from your coworkers.
Managing people in a workplace is not running a babysitting service. There is no need to monitor how many coffee breaks someone takes each day if they are your number one producer. You don’t need to worry about Katy coming in five minutes late 2 days per week stopping for coffee if she stays 30 minutes late 5 days per week and does a wonderful job for you.
Caring about details more than you care about people can make your coworkers feel as if they are not competent. Making people feel incapable will definitely make them function that way. It’s easy to be inept and incompetent when the boss expects you to act that way.
Trust your coworkers and put a small amount of faith in them to perform their job well without the babysitter act. If you are a good manager your people will take care of the details which will allow you more time to take care of the people.
If you don’t enjoy how people take care of the details, get rid of them. Being the boss does have that privilege. Being a great manager means allowing and trusting your people will take care of the details on their own.
Always believe that you have room for improvement because we all do
Everyone has room for improvement. Things are constantly changing and so should you. It’s when you believe everything is just fine when it isn’t.
Showing that you can improve and learn new things is a sign of optimism. Optimism is infectious. Optimistic teams will see your need or want to improve and follow suit. Believe it or not if you take classes or attend seminars that allow you to work better, your team will also do it. They may need a little encouragement, but you can both benefit from improvement.
Pessimism is also infectious. If you don’t see a need or room for improvement, why should they? Being pessimistic your team will see that you stink regardless of whether or not you have been putting in a decent job as a manager or not.
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