A good attitude can work wonders at any organization. A cheerful receptionist, a friendly delivery person or a sales clerk with a charming personality can be money in the bank for your business.
By the same token, a bad attitude on the part of your staff members can drag your organization down like a 500-pound anchor.
The economic changes and hardships brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic are a prime example of something that can bring out negative attitudes. This kind of Stinkin’ Thinkin’ can hurt your entire organization. One or two bitter employees can change the perspective of the whole staff.
If you come across Stinkin’ Thinkin’ in your organization, gain control immediately before it affects your profitability.
What can you do? It’s important to eliminate any staff misconceptions and set the record straight. Bring your employees together and level with them.
The Case of the Absentee Owner
Consider the owner of a car dealership who was experiencing his worst slump in 20 years. Sales were off sharply and overhead was eating him alive. The man was an absentee owner and, when he made one of his infrequent inspections of the business, he was shocked to find the place in disarray — dirty windows, filthy floors and unwashed cars on the lot.
Employees weren’t even bothering to answer the telephones.
The owner discovered that the source of the problem (aside from his own long-distance ownership style) was the disgruntled general manager. He spread lies to the employees and fostered discontent throughout the organization.
The general manager was fired and the owner called a meeting of the entire staff. He began by accepting partial blame. He acknowledged that he contributed to the dealership’s problems by failing to keep in contact on a day-to-day basis.
Then, he explained how things were changing. A high standard of performance was now expected from every employee, and the owner assured the staff that he was confident they could deliver. He also made it clear that those who didn’t comply would be shown the door.
It turned out to be a very motivational speech and negative staff attitudes evaporated on the spot.
During the next 10 days, the dealership sold more cars than it had during the previous 30. So, if you spot any Stinkin’ Thinkin’ in your organization, determine how to get rid of it ASAP. You may face greater challenges and a longer turnaround than the business in our example, but stay the course and you’ll get it done.
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