Being more mindful simply means being more aware of what’s going on, really being “present” in the moment, and paying attention. It’s amazing to think how something as simple as this can increase employee engagement.
First, let’s look at some of the science behind how being more mindful can make you happier and more productive at work, and then I’ll give you some tips on how you can be more mindful.
This headline, “Exec loses job after allegedly slapping toddler on plane,” is an anger-evoking true story that spread quickly. Understanding why can help you spread your ideas, piggybacking on certain kinds of momentous events. “High arousal” negative emotions such as anger or anxiety spur us to share messages with others, discovered Wharton professor Jonah Berger, author of Contagious.
Times have changed. We are quick to explain the change by putting it down to the way our needs have altered over the years and how technology is constantly adapting to meet them. However, when it comes to what an employer expects from their employees, are things really that different?
I often think they shouldn’t be. When you strip away all the new technologies, modern processes and latest innovations much of what makes good management is still the same as what it was 100 years ago.
Here are some timeless skills and qualities we should always be thinking about when we hire, train and manage employees.
Without trust extraordinary results aren’t possible. Without trust and extraordinary results workplace optimism is absent. Without workplace optimism talented people stay away from or leave companies. What’s left? Mediocre results, missed goals and unhappy people.
Workplace optimism is not a viewpoint or belief system. It’s a cultural vibe that influences a positive work experience.
The outcomes of workplace optimism deepen and expand trust. Let’s look at the relationship.
Seven months ago, the Rustic Crust was on track for record sales of its all-natural pizza crust. Investors were enthused about soon-to-launch products that were gluten-free, thin crusts, and basil pesto. Founder and CCEO Brad Sterl was thrilled.
Then-disaster! Fire burned the rural New Hampshire factory to the ground on March 6.
Almost everyone seems to think that being vulnerable is a bad thing – it implies that you’re weak or defenseless. In fact, when someone is willing to admit they’re vulnerable, it demonstrates a level of trust and respect with the person or people they’re opening up to. Great leaders recognize the importance of bringing vulnerability to work because it is the foundation for open and nonjudgmental communications. The boldest act of a leader is to be publicly vulnerable.
I used to work for a guy named Larry. When Larry went on a business trip or took a vacation, we missed him. We were happy when Larry came back. I want to be the guy they miss. I want to be the guy they are happy to see back.
That’s a fine personal benchmark. I don’t know Larry, but I am pretty darn sure that this benchmark has little to do with Larry’s skill or competence. This benchmark is about Larry’s personal energy.
Are you the Gilda or Frank or Larry they miss?
Consider these simple guidelines for fueling your miss-me personal energy…
The desire to be liked derails many people. It happens a lot to adolescents and teenagers. Kids want to be accepted. They want to be popular. It’s almost always true that they wish to maintain or improve their social standing. You never see a popular kid roll up to school in the morning, pause, and think deeply about how to become unpopular.
It doesn’t happen. The popular kids want to stay popular. The unpopular kids wish they were popular. That leads to many bad decisions for young people.
All business has a human side. Part of it is the obvious one – human resources. Part of it is the fundamental one – customers. Part of it is what makes work satisfying rather than draining – acting like a human being.
The human side of business isn’t easy. It can be difficult to get right and is sometimes emotionally gruelling. But those difficulties are a challenge that we have to rise to, and sometimes they’re what makes the human side worthwhile.
Great workplace environments have many common characteristics. But almost all of them come back to the same common denominator… respect. Great colleagues and business leaders treat people with respect. Period. Full Stop.
And one of the most fundamental demonstrations of respect is the ability to listen to what others have to say, without interrupting them, without judgment, and without disdain. If we want to be respectful of the people we work with, we have to, first and foremost, be willing to listen to their opinion and treat that opinion with respect… even if it differs from our own.
Part one of this article covered the importance of understanding how cultures evolve as a foundation for improving how leaders manage work on specific performance priorities, challenges, or goals. These insights serve as a “compass” for leaders and dramatically increase the likelihood of achieving results. Leaders also need a clear roadmap and guide to manage the performance improvement journey, especially if a major culture issue (teamwork, discipline / organization, creativity / innovation, etc.) is impacting results.
The greatest experiment is one that speaks to each man and woman who seeks to realize their potential. It is an experiment that starts with a simple question…Are you happy?
You may be keeping strong and carrying on, but are you also finding ways to extract a sense of fulfillment, happiness and purpose when the going gets tough?
The imperative to focus on true happiness, on what truly gives one fulfillment (as opposed to a cursory rush of adrenaline or a momentary ego boost) is the stuff that great lives, great careers and great accomplishments are made of.
Here are some facts you need to know: