The elephant in the office

Sales are way down, several employees quit because of new policies, or a project bombed, and no one wants to talk about it. The silence is killing productivity and hurting morale.

Don’t ignore the elephant in the office. Instead, take these steps to confront the issue so your team can move forward:

Fess up to bad decisions—on an individual, team and organizational level. Stop pretending the problem doesn’t exist. While you don’t want to point fingers or gripe about others, you can say “We made a mistake. We were hopeful this would work, but it didn’t.”

Acknowledge the negative consequences. Sugarcoating the issue will only make it worse. Be open about the outcome and any setbacks. Admit that you wasted time, money and effort.

Work together to bounce back. Being honest about the situation you are in is the first step; now it’s time to recover. Set new goals and create a plan to meet them.

HR Memos D

— Adapted from “There is an Elephant in Your Office,” Brian de Haaff, The Huffington Post,