One of the issues that comes up often when I facilitate sessions asking business owners and middle managers things they’d like to change about their employees in the workplace, many say they wish their people would stop bringing their personal issues into the work environment.
I don’t know about you but whenever I’ve had serious personal issues to deal with, especially my divorce or the passing away of my father that created a challenge for me and my siblings to take care of my mom who was seriously ill in the final years of her life, it was virtually impossible for me not to think about those issues during the work day.
It’s not realistic to expect people to automatically turn off their thoughts and emotions as they relate to intense personal challenges.
Just like it’s not realistic for spouses and significant others in your employees’ lives to expect to have the workday challenges and issues automatically turned off when they arrive home.
Although it seems as if people have two lives, personal and professional, people really have one life with two or more aspects that must be melt together.
Trying to stifle discussion of personal challenges in the work environment will only make them even more distracted and increase their stress.
I would recommend giving employees reasonable freedom to vent and discuss these issues as they see fit, and offer feedback to them if you receive feedback from co-workers if it becomes a distraction to others and negatively impacts productivity.
A compassionate manager that communicates empathetically and allows some space in personal time of challenge will find appreciative employees will become loyal contributors.
With the occasional employee who seems to bring serious personal drama into the workplace daily, deal with it on a case-by-case basis and incorporate it into your regular performance conversations you should be having.
To discuss all your issues around workplace drama, join me this Thursday at 1p.m. eastern time when I interview Workplace Drama Expert, Marlene Chism – register for this FREE Expert Interview at www.CommunicationPowerForLeaders.com/expertinterviewseries
‘til next time, communicate with power!