Six Steps to Keeping Your Workplace Doghouse Free

Most of us have at spent time in the doghouse. Its usually after we’ve blown it or underperformed in someway. While the analogy is often applied to marriage, doghouses are just as common in workplaces around the globe. This is a problem because nothing good comes from keeping a doghouse at your workplace; it’s a place of punishment and isolation. However, ask managers if they keep a doghouse and most, if not all, will tell you they don’t.  But if nobody does, then why can most employees recount at least one story of feeling like they have been spent some time there. Doghouses are tricky things because sometimes they are the result of a manager who is punishing an employee, while at other times they are figments of the employee’s imagination. Even if they are the later, there is a lot you can do as a manager to make your workplace doghouse free. When it comes to eliminating doghouses, clarity and closure are the keys. Here are six steps to eliminating doghouses at your workplace. When an employee has made a mistake or underperformed: 1. Manage your emotions. Even if you are extremely angry with your employee, there still needs to be control. Anger clouds our judgement and weakens our self control, leaving us open to saying something, which may be extremely damaging. In the end your goal is to promote effective behavior in the workplace. Walking around angry will not help you do this. If you are really angry about the mistake an employee has made, avoid giving feedback until you have cooled off. 2. Address them quickly....

Why Starbucks Had Me Ringing their Bell

Tips for recognizing your employees Singer Anita Ward was the first to immortalize the words, “You can ring my bell.” While I don’t think she was singing about staff recognition, two companies I visited recently have taken the lyrics to heart. Recognizing an employee’s good work is essential, but you don’t always have to be the one to do it. Finding ways for either the customer or another employee to provide feedback can do a lot to boost someone’s mood at work. But if you want your others to reward your employees then you have to go about it the right way. A few weeks ago I stopped by a local Starbucks for coffee. While I waited for them to fix my Grande Decaf, I noticed this sign accompanied by a small bell which you can see in the picture at the top of this article. The instructions were clear; ring if  you experienced great service. Being an introvert, I tend to avoid doing things that draw attention, so the thought of actually ringing the bell created a subtle anxiety within me. I generally don’t ring bells in public, but, while I waited, I kept glancing down at the bell and it’s tiny sign. I realized that if I didn’t ring the bell, I was in effect saying that I didn’t receive great service, which up to this point I had.  How could I resist? The drive to encourage the Starbucks staff began to outweigh my need to remain invisible (something introverts like.) So before I left the store, I did it.  The small “ding” cut through the hissing...

Don’t Quit on your BIG Goals

Leading takes a lot of energy and if you need some extra these days, then try recommitting to some of your big goals and dreams. The reason? They are a significant source of personal motivation. Of course, I am not talking about tiny goals here. I’m talking about BIG Goals. You know, the one’s that inspire you, get your heart racing, and cause an ache deep down inside. The challenge with BIG goals, however, is that they are, well, big; and that is a problem because big goals are rarely easy. But, if you remain stubborn enough to chip away at your BIG goals, you slowly make progress, and this progress is a source of inspiration. More than a decade ago I remember going into a book store and wondering what it would be like to see your own book on the shelves. I figured it was akin to a musician hearing their song on the radio for the first time. “That would be cool!” I thought. Unfortunately, that’s as far as it ever went. Fast forward 10 years. Last week I walked down to my local Barnes and Noble and made my way over to the Business/Management section. To be honest, I did not expect to find anything with my name on it. After all, my book was not supposed to be out until October 1st, but when I scanned through the alphabet and arrived at the “R” section, there it was! In fact, I had to do a double take. It was one of those, “No way” moments. I even walked away and returned a second time...