Friday, April 21, 2017

Part 8. How not to suck at… Addressing the Issue

I’ve been a supervisor for a short 8 months, and I just went through my first performance review with each member of my team. Fortunately I have a great group everything went smooth. But what if it hadn’t? What if there was some issue I needed to address with a member? At work, is mostly business but in the real world, friendships and relationships can be devastated by unresolved issues.

I’m naturally passive aggressive – so I’m generally pretty easy going, let allot of things slide and just pick my battles when necessary. But I’ve also been guilty of letting things fester and build up so that when I do address the issue it’s a full blown explosion instead of simmer. And here’s the added bonus, as man you’re often labeled a sensitive or moody when you bring up an issue. We’re supposedly not supposed to care, feel or be bothered. Just “man up.” That is not healthy and we need to stop teaching young men that. The things that bother us need to be addressed. How we feel needs to be heard. That unresolved issue adds stress to your life and stress kills.

As a supervisor, the official performance review shouldn’t be the first time an employee hears about a problem in their performance. The same holds true in our daily lives. It’s better to talk through an issue after it happens than to let it build and let an explosion come out of nowhere. Yes, the other person may be defensive but a conversation allows both parties to be heard. Plus, they may not even know that there’s an issue until you tell them. It may be a complete misunderstanding and easily fixed. However, an argument, especially one seeded from an explosion is not going to do much but piss the other person off.

The only way to deal with the issue is to talk, I mean real communication. A conversation where both people are able to be truly heard and allowed to get stuff off their chest… not the kind of conversation where all you do is think of your next clap back. Don’t discredit how they feel by talking over them or saying why they shouldn’t feel the way they do. It’s their feelings. Let them feel! The need to understand how the issue makes you feel and you should understand why they do what they do. Even if the issue doesn’t get resolved, a little understanding of the situation will go a long way. You should offer constructive feedback, solutions, and help. Not judgement!

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