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The right stories motivate newbies

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in Office Communication,Workplace Communication

To inspire new employees, share stories about their co-workers—not their leaders, says a recent study by the Academy of Management Journal.

For the study, 290 trainees of a large technology company were divided into groups and over a two-month period told stories with one of four themes: high-ranking executives who upheld company values, high-ranking officers who violated company values, lower-ranking employees who upheld company values, and lower-ranking employees who violated values.

The results: The stories about lower-ranking employees who upheld or violated values were more impactful on the newcomers’ behaviors. Additionally, hearing inspiring stories about company leaders who upheld values actually caused employees to judge their peers more critically.

Takeaway: Your best bet for encouraging positive behaviors and limiting negative behaviors in your newest employees is to teach by example, and share real stories about their fellow co-workers, not the top brass.

— Adapted from “Want to Inspire Employees? Share Their Peers’ Successes,” Chad Brooks, Business News Daily,

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