Companies often learn early on that they’ll need to choose which kind of management style they’ll need to go with when handling employees. Some businesses go with the tough love approach, while others prefer a softer, nurturing style of management. Psychologists recommend using a combination of both for the best results. How will managers know when it’s the right time to switch styles?

Don’t Switch, Mix

The first thing that managers need to know is that using a combination of both hard and soft management doesn’t require them to do any kind of switching at all. It may be difficult to believe, but it is possible to combine these seemingly opposing styles and create a friendly environment that also holds people accountable for their responsibilities.

The best way to illustrate the point of how this can be done is through the application of criticism. There are ways for managers to criticize their employees without pushing them away, but what most people don’t recognize is that the path to constructive criticism begins with proper praise. Building employees up is good when they did something right, managers just need to watch the kinds of words they use.

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Talent Versus Skill

Astute managers never say words like talent, or natural when praising their employees. Equating the quality of a person’s work with their inherent ability rather than their hard work makes an employee vulnerable to self-doubt when they run into adversity. Here’s how it works: if an employee is successful because of talent, then they will think a task is not right for them every time they fail.

This severely cuts the confidence they have in their work, making them sensitive to even the softest of criticisms. The best employees aren’t necessarily the smartest of the bunch, but the ones with the most confidence when performing their tasks. Building that confidence takes more than just nurturing or pressure to achieve, it’s knowing the timing of when to hold back on both praise and criticism.

There are more techniques companies can use to help them build positive relationships with their employees. If you want to learn more or take advantage of such techniques, contact us today. We love talking to people in general, just as long as we know we’re helping them become better.

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