One of the best ways that leaders can promote outstanding performance is to challenge employees to exceed themselves and to regularly recognize and reward employees’ accomplishments. While truly valuing people has major benefits, only 38 percent of employees feel that their senior managers are genuinely interested in their well-being.
Business leaders should consider the Hippocratic Oath, which states “first, do no harm.” Since the impact of bad is stronger than good, leaders must first strive to avoid devaluing emotions. Next, they should focus on employee appreciation which is closely tied to engagement and loyalty.
When employees feel safe and valued, they are more resilient in the face of uncertainty. Leaders can influence the way that organizations respond under pressure and cultivate a culture that is grounded in realistic optimism. Realistic optimism in the workplace means facing the facts and then focusing on finding the best possible solution.
Self Expression / Mental Needs
Although the volume of available information is growing, society’s ability to make sense of it may be decreasing. As people’s increments of focus become smaller, they engage in more activities, but their attention diminishes.
There are four Focus Quadrants that can characterize a person’s self-expression needs:
1. Tactical Zone. This quadrant is characterized by a narrow focus and an absorbed mental state. It includes qualities like logical, analytical, precise, and methodical.
2. Big-Picture Zone. This quadrant is characterized by a wide focus and an absorbed mental state. It includes qualities like intuitive, open-ended, imaginative, and playful.
3. Reactive Zone. This quadrant is characterized by a narrow focus and a distracted mental state. It includes qualities like shallow, impulsive, intermittent, and inefficient.
4. Scattered Zone. This quadrant is characterized by a wide focus and a distracted mental state. It includes qualities like spacey, zoned out, indiscriminate, and overwhelmed.
Most people today believe that multitasking is the route to greater productivity. Feeling busy and connected is one way to feel more alive, but the negative side effects of multitasking are overstimulation and greater disconnection. One reason for this is that when a person divides their attention among many different tasks, each interaction becomes more superficial.
A unique characteristic of top performers is that they are able to avoid distractions, even when they are under intense pressure. The human brain learns at a slower pace when presented with large amounts of information. In reality, attention is a capability that must be trained in an intentional way and renewed on a regular basis. Shifting between the Tactical and Big-Picture Zones is a good pattern to establish.
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