One of the jobs we have as leaders is to give the people we support feedback; consider the results of any behavior and encourage or discourage more of the same behavior. Here is an interesting challenge. We know it takes one negative remark to wipe out ten positive or encouraging statements. And as humans, we have a tendency to look for what is wrong. What does this mean in terms of giving feedback at work? We need to make an effort to focus on and look for what our people do right and encourage them to continue those behaviors. The same is true for the feedback we give ourselves. Many times, our internal dialogue is filled with all that we did wrong, said wrong or is wrong. We say these things over and over – a constant feedback loop of negativity. We need to turn off the negative and turn on the positive. A great reminder of this is the following poem by C.W. Longenecker
If you think you are beaten, you are,
If you think you dare not, you don’t.
If you like to win, but think you can’t,
It is almost certain you won’t.
If you think you’ll lose, you’re lost,
For out in the world we find,
Success begins with a fellow’s will.
It’s all in the state of mind.
If you think you are outclassed, you are,
You’ve got to think high to rise,
You’ve got to be sure of yourself before
You can ever win a prize.
Life’s battles don’t always go
To the stronger or faster man.
But sooner or later the man who wins,
Is the man who thinks he can.