You have probably heard all of the following before: “Lead by Example,” “It starts at the top,” “Attitude is everything,” “Change your mind, change your life,” and “Showing up is half the battle.” It’s obvious that all of these quotes directly relate to those running projects and companies. Too often we find ourselves fighting in the trenches on a construction project and letting negativity take control of our decisions. As a leader it is so important to keep your team positive and effective. One bad apple can completely destroy the project of your team and your success on a project. This is especially true if the bad apple is… You! The first attitude you always have to keep in line is your own.
Let’s dive into a few tips to keep a positive attitude on your project:
Tip 1 – Always Take a Deep Breath Before You Respond
It’s pretty much inevitable that you will run into a situation where conversations get heated and very direct. As a leader, the first thing you should do is take a deep breath. You want to take a step back, collect all the facts you can, and then respond with a factual response. A screaming battle doesn’t benefit anyone and only hurts relationships. This doesn’t mean you should let someone walk all over you. Do your best to control your breathing, keep your cool, and respond with the best action.
Another great tip is to take this conversation away from any other individuals. Try your best to move this conversation away from any others and get down to the bottom of the problem. Rationale thinking is hard when emotions are flying high. By taking a deep breath you will allow yourself to control your emotions and respond in a professional manner.
When in doubt get it in writing. In today’s world you may see more negativity through an email chain than in person. The same philosophy goes when responding to emails. Never respond to an email with emotion. Take your time and get as factual as possible. Leave the email with some form of positive note and hope.
Tip 2 –Start the Day Off Right
Your team’s success starts with you. It is so important to start every day with a positive attitude. This attitude will rub off and be adopted by those around you. We dug down into the importance of having a morning routine in a previous post, but to recap a morning routine is a great tool to get you in the right mindset to conquer the day. Another way to start your day off right is to make sure you have a game plan for the day. Plan your day the night before so you can quickly get your team working effectively, have to time to make adjustments if needed, and effectively work on laying out the next part of the project. Lastly, it so important that you get a good night’s sleep, eat healthier, and drink enough water throughout the day. These three things will only help you increase your productivity, but they will always improve your attitude.
Tip 3 – Know your Triggers
We all have pet peeves and happiness triggers. Only you can figure out what little things set you off and what things make you smile. Take some time to make a list of all the little things that upset you and all things that make you happy. After you compiled your list, take some time to review your current situation and weigh how often you are dealing with the negative triggers compared your happiness triggers. Your goal should be to design a plan that helps you maximize the time experiencing your happiness triggers on your project. For example let’s say you truly enjoy seeing your team accomplish a milestone or goal (which I would hope you would) then, take the extra time to break down your work and create more goals for your team to hit. Celebrate with your team to enhance and spread that positive feeling.
It is the complete opposite for your negative triggers and you are going to want to minimize those as much as possible. At this point, you should look through your list and map out a plan that reduces those experiences. There is a chance you are going to have to get creative here and really master your mindset. It’s your goal to find what will work best in your situation and push to improve it.
Tip 4 – Work on Your Communication
Most problems on a project stem from poor communication. For some reason we tend to leave out details, misinform people, and use a negative tone. All of these will cause stress, a bad attitude, and hurt your project. As a leader in this industry it is crucial to communicate in an open, direct, and positive manner. You have to communicate your goals and expectations to your team, your office, your customer, and other trades. The only way to do this effectively is to be open by providing all the details needed to complete the task, direct by not beating around the bush and getting right to the point, and by being positive to help motivate and create that productive atmosphere. There are always ways to work on your communication. Take the time to really dive in and develop communication skills that will help you grow your success!
Tip 5 – Get Rid of Any Bad Team Members
Simply, if their attitude doesn’t fit into your positive approach then you should drop them as soon as possible. Throw away the garbage attitudes and performance. Never let a member on your team risk your success. You have to coordinate and handle so much on a project and the last thing you want to deal with is the attitude of a member on your team. You will not be doing them any favors by keeping them around. Let them go and keep moving forward!