Hello again and welcome back to our workshop. Up to now we have been talking about the importance of being a positive role model to anyone we get in touch with, especially if we are in a position of leadership. We have also seen how important and useful is to work as a mirror where people can see their strengths instead of their weaknesses. However, it is important to underline that it doesn´t mean we are not going to tell them when things are not going well.
On the contrary, we have to let them know about their mistakes and that is when choosing the right words will give us a whole new perspective, because we have to tell our students the truth by all means. Let´s think about this scenario, imagine you are leading a group which doesn´t reach the general expectations for its level but works very hard and tries to overcome its difficulties. That group needs support more than criticism and is exactly in that moment when being assertive will change the outcome for good.
Instead of telling them “This work in mediocre” why not trying with “There are some standards we must reach and we will review them together to be clear. Then we will work in teams to reach our goals together”. We are not loosing perspective here, we are just changing the focus from one that puts mistakes under the spotlight, to another that prefers to take advantage from individual strengths.
Obviously this is not the magic answer for all the problems of people we deal with, but it can help us to manage some difficult situations and it makes our jobs easier. An additional hint: try to personalize your comments whenever you talk to someone you are in charge of. Use their names, ask for personal things you know about them and that are not necessary related to work, be spontaneous and use anything that you feel comfortable with, but personalizing our comments will make other see the humanity in you. It helps to release stress.