💭I’ve Been Thinking…

about situations I’ve had as a business leader. I want to share one I have heard echoed by countless others. Perhaps this will help if you find yourself dealing with “the bad manager.”

One of the key reasons people leave their employers is “the bad manager.” While there can be all kinds of reasons someone is labeled “bad,” I’m going to focus on the toxic personality variety. These tend to be angry people who act out in the workplace. They are unaware of their actions’ impacts and/or feel entitled to direct anger at others. Why do so many of them last too long, even when their negative behaviors have become known to the organization?

I think it most frequently comes down to communication and timing. The process starts with employees comparing notes: most people want to find out if others have similar issues with the manager. They may try to address their concerns directly with the difficult manager. If that step fails, HR and/or upper management is alerted. HR/Upper management will want hard evidence, and it takes time to gather that. Then there are meetings with the difficult manager, either as an info exchange or wrapped in a Performance Improvement Plan (PIP). If wise, the company is simultaneously searching for an appropriate replacement.

All the while, the clock is ticking and valued employees become increasingly frustrated. They start looking elsewhere, leaving upper management to onboard several new people, sometimes with the difficult manager still in place.

So here’s my advice: Be fair while moving quickly and confidently to protect the people that deserve it.

Many caring people want to give the benefit of the doubt, and we know angry people are usually struggling with deep issues. But when we are truly on a mission to improve workplaces, we can’t tolerate bad behaviors. Remember, there’s a big difference (I learned the hard way) between giving a troubled employee an opportunity to course correct and giving someone who can’t or won’t improve more time to compromise your workplace.

Happy to talk through challenges you may be facing as you work to build a workplace with 360° respect.

🚀 Stories to Help You Drive Change

Here are my shares for this week:

SPECIAL NOTE: If you hit a paywall on any of the stories I share, go to Google Search, enter the name of the publication and something about the story (author, title, subject) to get a natural search link that usually by-passes the pay wall.

  • In 6 months, you will have better recourse if your air travel gets delayed or canceled. I’m thrilled, this is long overdue. Yeaaa consumers’ rights! Yeaaa, one of my least favorite industries being held accountable. 🥳
  • Bill Gates has mellowed over the years and is sharing lessons about what he wished he did better re: treating his employees more compassionately.
  • This piece from Business Insider talks primarily about tech workers in big tech companies but then segues into general hiring trends for tech workers. It’s long, but the detail and POVs are worth the time investment, IMHO. Oh, and you can learn a new acronym: ZIRP.
  • Empathy is back! I like to think it never really left us but that it was overshadowed by, well, a lot. Jamil Zaki, the author of this piece in Vox, thinks so too. Special thanks to Adam Edwards for sharing this with me.

Do Good Spotlight
🌟 Foster Love 🌟

Foster Love improves the lives of kids in foster care by providing new bicycles, college supplies, and “sweet cases” to thousands of foster youth across the U.S. This is such a creative charity. Teams of people (including companies) can host events where they build and create kits and boxes. It’s a unique team-builder that also gives back! Check them out: Foster Love.

Noteworthy 🖋
Linda Cohen, the Kindness Catalyst

Spot-on branding! Linda Cohen is a sought-after keynote speaker and corporate trainer helping companies reduce costs and increase profits by upgrading their cultures to winning levels of kindness. As Linda says, “Kindness is at the basis of every aspect of a positive company culture from recruitment and retention to morale and wellness!”

Her book, “The Economy of Kindness,” teaches for-profit organizations to connect the dots between rampant turnover, burnout, and poor employee morale in workplace interactions. With her workshops, books, and presentations, Linda is helping change the paradigm of business from cutthroat to cooperative, and business leaders around the world are embracing the kindness challenge.

To learn more about how Linda is helping companies improve their cultures and their profits, take a look at her website and reach out.

💞 Compassionate Workplaces Intention Pod

There wasn’t secure wi-fi where I was staying last Monday, so we skipped the intention pod, but we’re back on for this coming Monday. If you want a new way to jump-start your work week, join us.

It’s simple: join the Zoom meeting, say hello, and then quietly sit with the group for 3 minutes or so as we privately set our individual intentions for consciously facilitating kindness in our workplaces. That’s it! Then, we say bye, heading off refreshed and refocused. We meet from 9:00-9:15 a.m. ET each Monday. Email me for the Zoom link. We’d love to have you as part of our better workplaces pod.

🎵 On a Personal Note

⏳Until Next Time…

I took a day off to recharge and refresh earlier this week. I’m trying to take mini breaks ahead of when I need them so they feel like retreats, not recovery. When’s the last time you gave yourself some extra time during the work week? Not a full-blown vacation, just a little break from the routine? I love my work, but I loved my mini retreat earlier this week too. 

Wishing you all things wonderful, take care of you!


Share with your network...

Published On: 05/02/2024 / Categories: Niki's Notes / Tags: , , /

Building better workplaces takes a lot

But it’s absolutely worth it. Increased productivity, happier, more engaged teammates, less stress, more profits. Get links to news and insights our CEO, Niki Fielding, thinks you’ll enjoy, along with commentary, spotlights on innovative companies, and suggestions for not-for-profits that deserve extra love – delivered to your inbox every Thursday. Subscribe to Niki’s Notes for Compassionate Workplaces! It’s free, and as a bonus, we’ll send you our Compassionate Companies Checklist!

* indicates required

View our Privacy Policy here.