“I don’t have time for that touchy feely stuff, that doesn’t get the product out of the door”
“People are lazy, if I’m not hard on them nothing will get done”
“I was never coddled, and I turned out okay”
The above are quotes from leaders who believe a dominant, blunt, and aggressive leadership style motivates employees. They truly believe having an attitude of “showing people who’s boss” will inspire productivity and bottom line results. The quite opposite is true.
Control, intimidation, and humiliation decrease the brain functioning of employees rather than motivates
Neuroscience research reveals that creating a healthy emotional climate at work optimizes employee’s brain function. Here’s why. When the brain perceives a threat, the fight/flight response kicks in and people go into survival mode. While initially leaders may get results from employees, the results won’t last. Overtime, people either leave or stay but under perform and use lots of sick days to cope.
Three ways to help your employee’s brains function at their best:
1. Encourage a positive work culture where innovation and creativity are valued. If you have a need to have the last word or only your way is correct, you are stifling your employees best thinking and problem-solving abilities.
2. Establish clear expectations about your company’s core values and what is important. When expectations change from day to day or based on who the client is, efficiency decreases as well as respect for you as a leader.
3. Show consistency in your behavior as a leader so that people aren’t walking on the proverbial eggshells – wondering from day to day what kind of mood you’ll be in. If your mood is unpredictable, employee’s stress hormones increase and employee engagement decreases.
Make the conscious choice in your leadership style to be positive, clear, and consistent and you will help your employee’s brains function at their best.