Negative Emotions: Effect on Leaders and Organizations
Anger, resentment, annoyance, frustration, feeling powerless or fearful while giving us valuable data can be very detrimental to our relationships, productivity and even health if you don't channel them in constructive ways. This is especially true when you experience these negative emotions on a daily basis. If you don't learn to manage our emotions they will manage us. Being aware of negative emotions allows the opportunity to put them to constructive use. Anger can be a cover up for hurt, pain or fear and may be a reaction to not being able to achieve what you are seeking. Just as positive emotions like joy, excitement, enthusiasm offer feedback that we are on the right track, the negative emotions like anger give us feedback that things are not going as we want
When you or others are angry, the message is that someone has:
- Failed to fulfill an expectation or agreement
- Intentionally violated an important value or principle
- Created a barrier to reaching an objective
- Misused or misjudged you in some way
- Gotten in your way intentionally (Pearman 2007)
Anger prompts your body to prepare to fight, protest or run away. (Known as the flight or flight response.) With anger, you are preparing for a physical response such as yelling or aggressive behavior. It can also lead to passive aggressive behavior, avoidance, negativity, gossip and overall non productive working relationships Unaware managers or leaders I have found often shut down those they work with and then blame them for not being engaged. Anger and negativity triggers others anger and negativity. We have a hard time seeing how we contribute to the situation but are acutely aware of how others make us feel.
By denying anger, repressing it, acting it out, displacing it or projecting it onto on to others it becomes very destructive. A robust amount of research indicates that anger along with chronic stress and hostile behavior is linked to high blood pressure, heart disease as well as poor relationships and lowered productivity. When driven by negative emotions such as anger or fear we tend to behave in ways that justify and reinforce these feelings. (Eric Berne) Thus teams or workgroups can stay stuck in self reinforcing patterns of behaviors driven by our emotions and negative limiting thoughts.
Most conflicts between individuals arise from simple differences in personality type. (James Hollis) If we do not learn to be flexible and understand others styles of communicating, working and relating, we often trigger resistance to our leadership and interpersonal preferences. The resulting impact on the office climate can be devastating. Hallmarks of dysfunctional office environments include: judging or blaming others, lack of trust or support with and among team members, avoiding conflict, passive aggressive behavior, a lack of commitment to the work and avoiding accountability for negative behaviors and poor business results.
If you do not take responsibility for how you contribute to the situation you are in resistance to; you will stay stuck and may get used to the negativity, low morale and conflict that keeps you from being fully productive, engaged and happy in your work. The costs of not confronting these issues can impact organizational success by losing valued employees, lack of engagement with and among staff and not effectively achieving desired results.
To see how able you are in handling these common issues:
- Managing conflict productively in my organization
- Miscommunications productively within and among departments
- Leadership or management isn't in the loop of communications
- Leadership and management is aware of their impact on morale
- Eliminating negativity is interfering with results
- Eliminating passive aggressive behaviors
- Eliminate problematic behaviors
- Address low morale
- Engaging staff for optimal performance
- Developing our staff to function as a high performing team
Contact me for a free 30 minute consult or call 919 967-4106 today