Coaching attitudes is about getting someone to look at their own attitude and ultimately giving them a choice to change it. The goal is to get the employee to see how they are behaving in the workplace and to take the action on their behavior. The biggest factor in changing an employee’s behavior is a good attitude. Below are six ways to positively affect your employee’s attitude toward change.
- Have an employee read an article and write down two things they learned. This feeding of the mind can change the way they look at things if done consistently.
- Have an employee observe another employee who exhibits the desired attitude and behavior. They should share things that they observed in regard to getting better.
- Reward and Recognition - Make sure when an employee does show signs of improvement you not only recognize it but reward it as well. You can reward the desired behavior by simply sending a thank-you email or leaving a card on their desk.
- Focus on the employee's performance strengths and really leverage those to ensure a "mental door" is open to the area of improvement. Build good will by acknowledging the good things. If you only heard negative or constructive feedback, how long would you be open to feedback?
- Ask questions about how others may observe the way they are acting. For example, “What would someone new to the company say if they had to describe how you’re reacting right now?” The key is not to say anything and allow silence to do its job.
- Ask a rating question that prompts the employees to look at themselves. For example, "On a scale of 1 to 5 (5 being really positive and 1 not being very positive at all), how would someone describe your attitude toward this situation?” Here is where you can use their answer creatively. If they say 3 or 4 then ask them, “What are you willing to do to move toward a five?” The key is not to agree with their answer, but take the opportunity to open the dialogue to improve.
Attitudes and behaviors are critical to the development of people and the organizations they work for. Simply telling someone to change their attitude does not work. We have to prompt the change, reward effort when it shows, and continue to pursue opportunities when they present themselves.