We have all seen it, heard it and maybe even participated in it. You have had a great day at work, accomplished a lot, received a compliment from someone in leadership in your company and maybe even received a written “thank you” from one of your new clients you just acquired.

As you are sitting at the bar waiting for your friend to meet you, you notice two people who walk in and sit down within earshot of you. “All is well,” you think to yourself, until one of them opens up his mouth …

“I am so tired of always being taken advantage of at work …” one starts before they even have the chance to take their coats off. “I know, hey … all the work I do and I am still underpaid!”

The banter back and forth continues as you try hard not to listen. “If they keep making me work all these hours, I am going to have to find another job …” one says after placing their order. “If any more of my co-workers bother me at work, I am asking for a door for my cubicle …” the other replies in frustration.

This is all too typical. The problem is that in today’s work environment, we cannot just look at the employee in this instance, we must also look at the leader.

Look again at these complaints. Are they legitimate? Are they overused, or are they real? An engaged leader would not allow this to happen. If you are a leader reading this, then you should be able to help both of these individuals. Unless you are thinking the same thoughts as these two are. It is the leader’s responsibility to make sure that their team is:

  1. Well taken care of;
  2. Compensated properly;
  3. Not over worked;
  4. Not distracted by others;
  5. Pointed in the right direction; and
  6. Using their strengths every day.

Sure, we can always point at others and feel pretty good about ourselves, or we can look at this as an opportunity to grow. Build up the team, give them goals, support them, praise them and correct them when needed. Most of all, invest in them, so that they will not be frustrated in talking about work, but rather pleased to have a job and even more pleased to be working for such a great leader! Right now, think of one person that you work with or for. Which person at the bar would that person be? The one that was waiting for the other person to come in happy and content, or the others who were in distress? Find a way to convert the negative person to being more positive.

I would love to hear about your story and how you overcame issues like these.

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