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Communication Listening Power Plays and Players Trust Absenteeism/Tardiness

I am a supervisor, and sometimes I am a total jerk to my team. Many of my team members do not understand the immense pressure I’m under. It makes me a jerk when they do not do what I ask, or don’t do it my way. I take their ideas into consideration, give credit when due, and incorporate their ideas, but I still come off as the jerk when I do this. The result is that people quit, or they just do what they need to do because they are afraid of me. Do I play the nice guy and under-perform, or be the jerk and keep up the success achieved so far? How do I fix this and avoid becoming the person everybody hates?

You state that you consider your employees’ ideas, give credit when due, and listen to their suggestions, but you also state that you are a “jerk” when your employees do not do their jobs the way that you want. It sounds like you are going through the motions of treating your employees as valued resources, while in fact you are giving them little more than the freedom to do their jobs your way.

You are concerned that if you “play the nice guy,” your employees will under-perform rather than continue the “success achieved so far,” but you should look at this success more carefully. After all, you indicated that your employees are quitting, doing minimal work, and fear you, while you are trying to avoid becoming the “person everyone hates.”

At this point, you should try to provide your employees with real opportunities for two-way communication. In addition, if you try to focus your behavior on treating your employees with respect and trust, you will be establishing a framework that is more likely to enhance their success and yours.

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