The Progress Coaching Blog

    6 Tips to Coaching Bad Attitudes

    July 30, 2013 Posted by : Tim Hagen
     Coaching Bad Attitudes

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    We all have them in life ... the people who are just down and who want us to join them in being down. You know the co-workers who complain about everything. Negative Nancy, Debbie Downer, Moody Rudy, these are all expressions we’ve heard before to describe people with a particular demeanor that can bring down the mood. But when it comes to sales and customer service these types of people don’t just bring down the mood, they bring down the sales.

    Most people would rather support a business with a “Positive Polly” than a “Sour Simon.” So, it is up to the managers to help employees improve their attitudes. The mirror check is one way to accomplish this. Have employees take a long look in the mirror, let them decide if they want to make the choice to change their behavior and then come up with actions that will help them improve problem areas.

    Turn that frown upside down for your employees and see your sales progress upwards as well.



    The biggest factor in changing an employee’s behavior is a good attitude.  Below are 6 ways to positively affect your team’s attitude toward change.

    1. 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.
    2. Have an employee observe another employee who exhibits the desired attitude and behavior. They should write down 3 things they noticed they need to do to get better.
    3. Reward and Recognize - Make sure when an employee does show signs of improvement you not only recognize but reward it. You can reward the desired behavior by simply sending a thank you email or leaving a card on their desk.
    4. 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, ask yourself how long would you be open to feedback?
    5. Ask questions of how others may observe the way they are acting. For example, ask "What would someone new to the company say in describing how your reacting right now"? The key is to really wait and let silence do its job. Do not say another word until they answer.
    6. Ask a rating question that prompts the employee to look at them self. For example, "On a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being really positive and 1 not be very positive at all, how would someone describe your attitude toward this situation"? The key is to use their answer creatively. If they say 3 or 4 ask them, what are you willing to do to move toward a five? The key is not to agree with their answer; rather the goal is to open the dialog 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.

    FREE Whitepaper on Coaching Bad Attitudes:

    Download White Paper:  Coaching Bad Attitudes  in the Workplace


    Attend our Webinar on August 1st: Always Stay Positive: 21 Days to a Positive and Powerful Attitude at Work

    Watch This Webinar:  Always Stay Positive

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    About Author

    Tim Hagen
    Tim Hagen

    Tim Hagen founded Progress Coaching, a Training Reinforcement Partner Company, in 1997. His entrepreneurial career began in college leading to positions in sales, sales management, and sales training for small and large corporations, and eventually ownership of several training companies. Tim is often a keynote speaker at companies teaching the value of coaching and conversations in the workplace. He possesses a unique combination of hands-on experience, academics, and innovative insight to solve the industry’s most common challenges specific to workplace performance. Tim holds a bachelor’s degree in Adult Education and Training from the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee.

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