Q: “Some members of my staff have told me that people think I’m mean. One of them accused me of never even having a direct conversation with her. Another one said that employees gossip about me every day.
“I believe that instead of listening to rumors and hearsay, these people should develop their own opinions about me. What do you think?” Puzzled Manager
A: I think you need to figure out exactly what is bothering your employees. Do they dislike your decisions and policies? Are they uncomfortable with your? Since a few of these disgruntled folks seem unusually willing to provide feedback, ask them for a more specific description of the problem.
For example: “Although I understand that some people describe me as ‘mean’, I really don’t know what I’m doing to create that impression. In the future, what could I do differently that might change their opinion of me?”
Actually, one employee may have already provided a clue. She apparently feels that she has never had a real conversation with you, which seems to suggest that you should invest more time in developing relationships. If you want people to ignore the rumor mill and form their own opinions, you will have to interact with them.
Not sure how to Ten Helpful Questions to Ask Your Employees.with your employees? Here are some questions that may help:
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