Bosses between assertiveness and teamwork: darling or dork?


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In the daily routine of the game, the question of role and behavior patterns arises. If one is too nice, one is liked, but perhaps not respected. If one is too harsh, one can perhaps get through, but loses sympathy points. How to solve the dilemma?

Bosses between assertiveness and teamwork: darling or dork? Bosses between assertiveness and teamwork: darling or dork?


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Barbara Haag Fixed aspect ratio Barbara Haag is a management consultant and businesscoach.

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Everybody's darling or dork on duty?

Whoever wants to push things can not be Everybody's Darling. Or is it? Those who value human contacts should be able to save themselves for private life. Is that so? Can one be really nice at work or have a strong social incompetence?

What prejudices do the representatives of the two camps face? Is there a golden mean? And how do executives find out whether the type “lonely wolf” or “Mr. Nice Guy ”fits; how can you assess the motivation behind the actions of your employees?

A-types and B-types - cliché or reality?

Most of us know both extremes: colleagues A, who is competent and who is asked for support, because he is not afraid to go through when things need to be done quickly. When he is playing in the coffee kitchen, he is usually not there - and is not really missed on such occasions.

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Then there are Collegues B, who just clashes with everyone, who also takes time for the interpersonal, which one can at any time ask for an assessment of the film, which he last seen in the cinema and which one then, depending on how the Judgment fails, also looks or not.

Who would you rather have in the team?

Who would you prefer in your team? Are you already working with both colleagues? Which of the two is the more competent?

For example, is it possible to imply that Type B is not as interested in his career as Type A (according to experience, B-types are often ignored in favor of A-types during promotions)? And how much feeling can you afford in everyday work?

Envy - but a good feeling?

Let's take as an example a supposedly "bad" feeling that we are always told not to allow: envy. The PsyBlog website explains the benefits of "benign envy," that boring feeling that we are missing something that we see in others.

These little stitches may be good for us (as long as we feel the other deserves its success, otherwise we will really be seized only by an unproductive, destructive envy). Benevolent envy can motivate us, give us hope, make us more creative, and let us look at things from a different perspective.

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Assertiveness does not make it more productive

PsyBlog also quotes an interesting study on the topic of enforcement and sympathy among executives. The results: In terms of productivity, the successes did not rise unrestrictedly parallel to the current performance of a manager.

According to the researchers, a particularly high level of assertiveness in terms of productivity is no better than a moderate level; In any case, it was better to be moderately assertive than not at all. In terms of sympathy (“social results”), the situation was similar:

Moderate degree of certainty

The sympathy curve did not rise infinitely in accordance with the ability to assert itself, but fell sharply. So it was definitely better to have a moderate degree of certainty than too much, the researchers concluded.

Combining the results of the two components results in a curve that is similar to an inverted U - so there must be an ideal point where social and economic outcomes meet.

Drawers do not help

Last but not least, the question arises as to the extent to which the behavior of a person allows conclusions about his feelings, his motivation. This is especially important when it comes to compiling a team or filling key positions.

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If you have a little knowledge of the human being and experience in dealing with others, you know that you can not go further with the idea of ​​drawers. Anyone who has experience in human resource management or leadership knows how many employees feel themselves out of place and in their role, how great is the danger of an internal termination and service according to regulations.

Identify potential employees in time

Personal diagnostic tools can help identify potentials, identify deficiencies, and provide the best possible support Company and employees.

The potential lies in every employee, regardless of whether he always meets the ideal point on a curve or not. Recognizing and promoting is the task of every employer.


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  1. Bernd

    Successful article, I really see a problem that many executives have.

    • Simone Janson

      Thanks for your comment.

  2. Jan

    Unfortunately, this article conveys only half the truth: Unfortunately, we live in a society that is on the decline - topic outsourcing and staff reduction. The companies are on a spur and are hiring staff temporarily to close them down soon enough because they can no longer afford the responsibility and long-term salaries of old-age pensions. That's a pretty sad situation, and talking about blame for personal failure does not make it any better.

    • Simone Janson

      Thanks for your comment, I see it a little differently, because it comes in the sum of each other. Or, as the saying goes, change yourself if you want to change the world.

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