Top 10 Ways to

Foster and Maintain 

Positive Attitudes in the Workplace

Here are 10 easy to implement tips to help you create, and maintain positive attitudes in the workplace

Remarkable, high-performance leaders are masters at inspiring positive attitudes in the workplace.

There are significants benefits to be gained:

  • Improved productivity
  • Increased discretionary effort by your team members
  • Reduced turnover and absenteeism
  • Reduced employee and customer complaints
  • A workplace that people look forward to coming to

Don't underestimate the power of the last bullet point. While we are all in business to make money - or if you're a not-for-profit, to be financially sustainable. We spend 90,000+ hours at work in our lifetime. You'd be a fool not to think that how people feel about work, rolls out into the wider community.

Are you a leader who wants to have a powerful impact?

If so, it is in your hands to create a buoyant workplace that inspires people to be at their best. Even if you're working for an organization that isn't the most positive itself, you can create a hub that is bristling with energy and life. 

To foster positive attitudes in the workplace, use the 4Bs of High-Performance model to inspire your actions. 

4Bs of High-Performance assist with fostering positive attitudes in the workplace

4Bs of High-Performance assist with fostering positive attitudes in the workplace

Use these 10 tips below to create positive attitudes in the workplace, and you'll make a welcome dent in the universe!

Tip 1. Set Goals and Deadlines


To help people become self-motivated make sure: 

  • There are clear goals
  • A sense of purpose to the work they do (they are connected to the organizations vision and mission)
  • There is urgency around achieving the goals
  • They are challenged by the goals - pushing them into their potential - but not excessively

When you get these four elements balanced righty, they provide a feeling of accomplishment. The "Wow, I did it!" feeling. People thrive on challenge, and this will drive the positive attitudes in the workplace that you want. 

Check out Tip 2 in this article on employee motivation techniques - and what you can learn from your local bowling alley!

Tip 2. Make Sure You are Charged up


It's impossible to help your team members have positive attitudes in the workplace if YOU aren't positive.

Instead of walking around grumbling about the fact that people's attitudes aren't where you would like them to be, focus your energy on finding the positive in others. Be a guiding light that lifts your people.

Do you know what gets you to work with a spring in your step? Just as importantly, do you know what gets your people to work with a spring in their step? If you aren't sure, find the answers in our  training "My Career, My Choice"

Tip 3. Encourage People to Achieve & Create Meaning in the Work They Do


While not everyone working for you wants to be the next CEO of the company, most people do want more out of their jobs. Find out their goals, desires, and strengths. Once you've done that, help them to build into their work those elements that fulfill them and better serves the company. Check out the article on one-on-one meetings to discover how to get these conversations going with your team members.

Furthermore, even when in the most mundane of jobs, help people to see the meaning and purpose of what they are doing.

In his book "Authentic Happiness" Martin Seligman, tells the story of being in a hospital at the bedside of a friend in a coma.

The Ward Orderly was busy moving paintings and prints around in the room. Moving them from one spot to another until they looked just so. When Marty asked what he was doing, the Orderly replied:

"My job. I'm an orderly here. But you see I'm part of the team responsible for the health of these patients. Even though Mr. Miller hasn't been conscious since he arrived, when he does wake up I want to make sure he sees beautiful things right away".

The orderly moved his job into a higher calling. He shifted it to something more than just a person on the end of a broom. He knew he was making a real difference in the work that he did.

Did he come to that realization of his own accord?

Or was it a leader who inspired him to see the importance of his work?

We don't know the answer to that question.

But the question it begs you to ask yourself is, "How can I help my people to create such a positive attitude about the work that they do?"

Tip 4. Be Flexible in Your Leadership Style


Emotional maturity and good judgment enable you to know when to be relaxed, open, and warm to team members. And when to put on the leader's hat, set limits and accept final responsibility.

Different people respond to different styles of leadership and communication. 

One person will respond to warmth, a certain amount of familiarity and plenty of encouragement. Another will want only a business-like relationship, with a leader that is firm and direct. 

Another gets bored if not continually challenged and stimulated. Whereas someone else will want things to remain stable and have a sense of sameness about the job.

It's your job to find the right buttons to press that fosters positive attitudes in each person. Check out the Insights To Success Program. In this program, you'll discover three essential tools that help you better understand people. Most importantly, you'll learn how to flex your style, so you more easily build stronger relationships. 

Tip 5. Listen to Your Team Members Opinions


The person closest to the task generally knows the best way of improving it. Therefore, tap into the knowledge and talent of your people.

Sure, you may not always be able to implement their suggestions. When that happens, help them to understand the constraints around why things may not always be able to be changed. But, as best you can work, to implement their suggestions to improve job performance, quality of work or environment.

Most lousy attitudes in the workplace are caused by systems, processes and procedures that make it more difficult for people to do their job than it needs to be. Think of yourself as a barrier buster when it comes to streamlining your processes.

Tip 6. Promote Respectfulness


Job titles may indicate a particular hierarchy of control and responsibility. But that doesn't mean someone with a lesser job title is any less important.

Respect each individual for what they bring to the organization.

Man would not have walked on the moon without the janitors making sure that the halls of NASA were pristine.

Success and positive attitudes in the workplace are created when the entire team respects the value of each position and the diversity of thinking, talents, styles, and experience each person brings.

Tip 7. Be Appreciative of Others


In climate/culture survey, after climate survey, people complain that there is a lack of recognition and appreciation. "What difference does it make if you do a good job or not. No one notices you until you mess up." Make an effort to let others know when they are doing a good job.

Check out these sample appreciation letters to give to your team members.

Tip 8. Practice Random Acts of Kindness


This can be as little as offering a cup of coffee to someone who is feeling under the pump. Or giving a much-needed day off to someone who has gone above and beyond the call of duty. It will ensure others know that you care and that they are celebrated by you.

Tip 9. Make Work Fun


Ok, so you can't throw a party at work every day. It is possible though to make the workday more enjoyable. Fun can be a tool to help improve job performance and promote positive attitudes in the workplace. It doesn't have to be anything momentous. Offering ice cream on a scorching hot day. A surprise lunch/morning tea. Having a silly hat day.

The effective use of humor can release team members' creativity to resolve dilemmas, because they feel safe to "think outside the box." The appropriate use of fun can create and maintain positive attitudes in the workplace.

Tip 10. Make Sure People are Rewarded Fairly


This is deliberately the last tip. Because if you get the rest of these tips right, this becomes the least important. As you will discover in the "How to Motivate Employees" training, high wages do not motivate people. But low wages can demotivate.

Your job is to ensure people feel they are fairly rewarded, so it is a non-issue for them. Most critically though, make sure the other success factors are set up in your workplace so that the environment enables positive attitudes to thrive. 

When you access "How To Motivate Employees" (this product is currently undergoing a rewrite and will be available soon) you will get more tips and ideas on how to keep people at the top of their game.

Take the Is Your Workplace Motivating? Quiz.

In Summary

These are simple tips to help promote positive attitudes in the workplace. In business, much as it is in life, it is the small things that have the most dramatic impact.

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