Friday, July 8, 2016

Monday, April 4, 2016

Supervisor Training: No Shame In Conflicts, Only Failure to Learn from Them

Everyone experiences conflicts. There is no shame in it. As a supervisor, you should analyze the conflicts you experience so you can learn from them. The only shame is failure to learn from mistakes and repeating self-destructive patterns that make your life miserable.

After a conflict, identify the extent to which you contributed to it by using this list below. If you find yourself checking off the same items repeatedly after conflicts, your employee assistance program EAP can help you devise personal strategies to get along better with others at work.

. You provoked a fight or at least made it worse with hurtful, cynical or inflammatory comments. You knew the minute you opened your mouth that your remarks would add fuel to the fire.

Impulsiveness. You lost your cool. You let your temper flare or you raised your voice needlessly, triggering resistance.

Stubbornness. You refused to back down or admit error, even though deep down you knew you were at least partly to blame. You were unwilling to listen and learn.

Bitterness. You took out your pent-up anger on someone. A simmering resentfulness drove you to conflict, possibly stemming from disappointments over your career or workplace jealousies. #supervisor training #supervisor courses

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Supervisor Training Courses Don't Mention Blue Monday

January 25, 2016, will be the most depressing day of the year. Why is this true? Does it have any implications for supervisors in managing employees and their performance? Good question. The specific date changes year to year, but the third Monday in January has been coined Blue Monday. There is nothing scientific about this day being the most depressing day of the year, but nevertheless it has a useful purpose, that being to help people become more aware of depression, its symptoms, and its treatability. The hope in promoting the day is to inspire those needing help to get it. The day was created by a researcher who pointed out that this day represents the gloomiest day because (in the northern hemisphere) it has minimal sunlight, plenty of cold and gloomy weather, and holiday bills coming due—all of those compounded by New Year’s resolutions that have been broken since January 1. The day is a good one for employees to be reminded that the EAP is available and for supervisors to be reminded they should consider referrals as needed. If you don't have a 'real' EAP, you may have a 800# on the back of your insurance card that will direct you to help. In supervisor training courses, helping employees means engaging with them to the extent that you get to know the actual person can discern when it is necessary to refer the employee to the officially sanctioned form of personal help made available by your organization.

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Reasonable Suspicion Training | DOT or Non-DOT Supervisor Training in Reasonable Suspicion

Most supervisors have misinformation about alcoholism and drug addiction.  This misinformation gets in the way of effectively responding to troubled employees, who can easily explain away and postpone confrontation as a result of their increasingly, well-practiced defensive mechanisms. Without training and a set of guiding principles for managing troubled employees with alcohol and drug problems, supervisors are unwittingly outmatched.  Information about the disease concept of alcoholism and drug addiction; impact workplace substance abuse; common myths and misconceptions; about tolerance and cross tolerance; understanding loss of control, denial, avoiding armchair diagnosing, stopping enabling.  Also included are pictures of licit and illicit drugs from major categories, signs and symptoms, and principles of constructive confrontation. This program is recommended for Reasonable Suspicion Training of Supervisors.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

No Such Thing as a "Functional Alcoholic"

There is no such thing as functional alcoholism, just as there is no such thing as functional cancer. Both are chronic potentially fatal illnesses that grow worse over time. The term functional alcoholism allows the enabler (that's you if you ever use this term) to continue the advantages of the relationship they have with the alcoholic, even while their role as an enabler grows worse. Functional alcoholism assuages your guilt for doing nothing but help the alcoholic get worse. The defense mechanism is akin to “minimizing." Functional alcoholism means “his or her drinking problem doesn’t bother me.” Those labeled as functional alcoholics by others often demonstrate middle or late stage alcoholism characteristics including blackouts (memory loss while drinking), DUI arrests, and dysfunction within their homes, including relationship problems with the spouse and children. You don't hear about or see evidence of these things in your workplace relationship because evidence of acute, chronic alcoholism shows up there last. The most enabling statement--the real killer--is helping alcoholics to the grave by calling them functional. Translation: The drinking problem doesn't bother me. This video explains more.

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Why do supervisors avoid confronting employees about their performance issues?

The most common reason for avoiding confrontation is fear. Overcoming this fear is accomplished by understanding how to use an effective approach. Being firm and direct, and not sugar coating the message is important, but this can be accomplished in a way that eliminates heavy-handedness and engenders cooperation. For example, “Bill, I received feedback about your customer presentation yesterday, and I want to share it with you.” “Bill, some customers felt your presentation lacked depth in its details, leaving them feeling more confused. Were you aware of these concerns?” “Bill, I want to work with you to improve your marketing presentation, how would you suggest we go about making such improvements?” Notice in these examples how the supervisor elicits a “partnering” approach to solving problems. The concerns of the supervisor are concrete, and the approach is likely to elicit better cooperation in solving the performance issues versus harming the relationship by making the employee feel scolded.

Monday, November 2, 2015

Teach Employees to Do Self-Evaluation

Here's what to educate your employees to do...

Explain t employees the art of self-criticism. After all, there’s nothing wrong with self-criticism. An employee can always improve. But don’t confuse self-criticism with self-punishment. Engage in self-criticism that elevates your skills and abilities with a forward-looking approach. The gist: Start by reviewing the successful elements of your recent project. Next, divide your assessment into meaningful parameters that you will critique. If your job was to prepare an annual report on widgets for your employer, consider quality, timeliness, use of resources, format appearance, or even self-imposed stress, if you suffer from procrastination, etc. You can divide any project into similar parameters. Rate each one on a scale of 1 to 7 to judge degree of accomplishment. Identify areas for improvement, and review your critique just before your next assignment. Now, attempt to beat your score as you begin working on the new project. 

You can get a subscription to Frontline Supervisor EAP Newsletter which will teach your supervisors how to manage troubled employees and improve their productivity while also having positive relationships with them. Frontline Supervisor is the only newsletter in the world designed to help supervisor help their most at-risk employees using the designated employee assistance program properly-- Go here to get a free trial.