Global Leadership Blog

Sunny attitudes boost workplace productivity

It’s no surprise that happy people are popular socially – but studies show that maintaining a positive attitude at work can affect many things, including performance. And it’s not just because coworkers like optimists. The study “Why does affect matter in organizations?” shows positive people not only influence the environment around them, but they also work more efficiently and get more done.

According to Sigal Barsade PhD, the co-author of the study, positive people tend to do better at work because they are more efficient at processing information. “If you’re in a negative mood, a fair amount of processing is going to that mood. When you’re in a positive mood, you’re more open to taking in information and handling it effectively.”

Additionally, the study indicated that employees who possess positive affect, or emotion, are more actively involved in pursuing work goals. The results indicate that being positive at work can translate to success.

How positivity affects the work of the team

Even in spontaneous collaborations, teams follow a cycle as they produce work together – forming, storming, norming, performing.

As they form a team, there’s often conflict – or storming – as team members negotiate their responsibilities. When the conflicts are worked out, the team comes to a stage where they are in agreement (norming), and finally taking on the tasks that will produce the desired outcome (performing).

When negative individuals are on the team, “storming” could last longer adding to the overall length of the project. Just as bad – the prolonged negativity could affect the mood of the other team members and impact their performance long-term.

So how do team members and managers recognize when negativity is prolonging the storming period and how do they resolve it?

Explore the importance of being positive with the entire team. When each person understands that being happy and optimistic not only affects their performance, but also their coworkers’ performance, they may be willing to embrace a more positive outlook at work.

Each team member should strive to start the day with optimism. With so much at stake, it’s worth it to ask each member of your team to try to be positive each day. The discussion paves the way for managers to remind staff of this commitment when workers fall into negativity.

As an individual, you can lead the positivity movement at work. Take it upon yourself to say hello to coworkers or smile more often. When you treat others with kindness and appear happy, you can infuse the entire workplace with lightness.

Find the good in each situation. Each failure, delay and awkward moment can be a valuable learning experience. You probably won’t feel great while you’re immersed in the bad situation, but if you can position the situation positively you can keep your mind and emotions off your negative feelings and onto the work task at hand.

The singer, Lyle Lovett, once said that your good friends are the ones that you commiserate with, rather than celebrate with. If you feel that it’s important to allow a coworker to complain in order to preserve the relationship, you can agree on how long to allow the complaining to go on. But keep in mind that your ultimate goal is to maintain a positive attitude in every situation. Do that and you’ll find that a simple smile can transform your workplace success.

Resources:

Barsade and Gibson; Why does affect matter in organizations? Academy of Management Perspectives, February 2007

Do positive and negative attitudes drive performance; Wharton Knowledge, University of Pennsylvania, April 2007.

Melissa Lamson

About The Author

Melissa Lamson, Founder and President of Lamson Consulting, is an author, consultant, and speaker who accelerates the business expansion goals of today’s most successful companies by developing global mindset, refining leadership skills, and bridging cross cultural communication. More About Melissa Lamson

PRIVACY POLICY

What information do we collect?

We collect information from you when you place an order, subscribe to our newsletter, respond to a survey or fill out a form.
When ordering or registering on our site, as appropriate, you may be asked to enter your: name, e-mail address, mailing address, phone number or credit card information. You may, however, visit our site anonymously.

Like most websites, we use cookies and/or web beacons to enhance your experience, gather general visitor information, and track visits to our website. Please refer to the ‘do we use cookies?’ section below for information about cookies and how we use them.


What do we use your information for?

Any of the information we collect from you may be used in one of the following ways:

 

. To personalize your experience (your information helps us to better respond to your individual needs)
. To improve our website (we continually strive to improve our website offerings based on the information and feedback we receive from you)
. To improve customer service (your information helps us to more effectively respond to your customer service requests and support needs)
. To process transactions . Your information, whether public or private, will not be sold, exchanged, transferred, or given to any other company for any reason whatsoever, without your consent, other than for the express purpose of delivering the purchased product or service requested.
. To administer a contest, promotion, survey or other site feature
. To send periodic emails

 

The email address you provide for order processing, may be used to send you information and updates pertaining to your order, in addition to receiving occasional company news, updates, related product or service information, etc.

Note: If at any time you would like to unsubscribe from receiving future emails, we include detailed unsubscribe instructions at the bottom of each email.


How do we protect your information?

We implement a variety of security measures to maintain the safety of your personal information when you place an order or access your personal information.
We offer the use of a secure server. All supplied sensitive/credit information is transmitted via Secure Socket Layer (SSL) technology and then encrypted into our Payment gateway providers database only to be accessible by those authorized with special access rights to such systems, and are required to keep the information confidential.

After a transaction, your private information (credit cards, social security numbers, financials, etc.) will not be stored on our servers.


Do we use cookies?

Yes (Cookies are small files that a site or its service provider transfers to your computers hard drive through your Web browser (if you allow) that enables the sites or service providers systems to recognize your browser and capture and remember certain information.

We use cookies to help us remember and process the items in your shopping cart and compile aggregate data about site traffic and site interaction so that we can offer better site experiences and tools in the future. We may contract with third-party service providers to assist us in better understanding our site visitors. These service providers are not permitted to use the information collected on our behalf except to help us conduct and improve our business.

If you prefer, you can choose to have your computer warn you each time a cookie is being sent, or you can choose to turn off all cookies via your browser settings. Like most websites, if you turn your cookies off, some of our services may not function properly. However, you can still place orders over the telephone.


Do we disclose any information to outside parties?

We do not sell, trade, or otherwise transfer to outside parties your personally identifiable information. This does not include trusted third parties who assist us in operating our website, conducting our business, or servicing you, so long as those parties agree to keep this information confidential. We may also release your information when we believe release is appropriate to comply with the law, enforce our site policies, or protect ours or others rights, property, or safety. However, non-personally identifiable visitor information may be provided to other parties for marketing, advertising, or other uses.


Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act Compliance

We are in compliance with the requirements of COPPA (Childrens Online Privacy Protection Act), we do not collect any information from anyone under 13 years of age. Our website, products and services are all directed to people who are at least 13 years old or older.


Your Consent

By using our site, you consent to our privacy policy.


Changes to our Privacy Policy

If we decide to change our privacy policy, we will post those changes on this page.


Contacting Us

If there are any questions regarding this privacy policy you may contact us via moc.l1532206542iamg@1532206542CLLgn1532206542itlus1532206542noCno1532206542smaL1532206542.