How To Use Affirmation For Effective Leadership: Boost Your Team And Get The Best Out Of People
If you’re a manager, team leader or parent, you know how important it is to get the best out of people.
The answer? Affirmation.
Speaking to people’s most cherished values and skills is indispensable for encouraging them to reach their potential.
But how exactly do you master the art of affirmation?
In Extraordinary Influence, organizational psychologist Tim Irwin reveals the science behind the power of affirmation and shows readers how they can use it in practice.
He draws on neuroscientific research to explain the superior efficacy of affirmation over compliments and outlines actionable tips and tricks for becoming a more effective leader.
By helping you reinforce positive values in your team, avoid resorting to yelling when raising kids, and build stronger relationships at work or home, this book will help you learn the art of affirmation that could be transformative for both yourself and those around you.
The Power Of Affirmation: How Praise And Support Boost Performance
We all know that affirmation is an essential part of personal and professional success.
But what most people don’t realize is that the human brain craves affirmation just as much as it needs recognition, approval and appreciation.
Neuroscientific research has shown that when we receive positive emotional feedback, the brain responds by releasing neurochemicals which increase our sense of wellbeing.
Moreover, studies carried out by American psychologists Creswell, Welch and Taylor found that affirmation reduces stress levels and sharpens problem-solving skills – both key to improving overall performance.
However, the kind of affirmation we need is more than just a casual compliment or pat on the back – even though those small gestures can give us a boost in morale.
For true affirmation to be effective, it needs to be deeper – with constant reinforcement through constructive feedback and high praise if we’ve done well.
The Japanese shokunin tradition is testament to this fact – where apprentices often spend years studying under masters before they can complete simple tasks such as preparing eggs.
And it’s only when they have completely mastered their craft that they receive a distinctive title of “artisan” from their teacher; the final sign of support and acknowledgement bestowed by their respective sushi master!
The Key To Effective Affirmation: Praise People For Their Strengths And Achievements
When it comes to giving support and affirmation, it’s important to understand that not everyone responds to praise the same way.
That’s why the best way to communicate your support for your team member is by focusing on what matters most to them – their strengths and professional competencies.
For example, if your team consists of four different personality types (the doer, advocate, idealist, or challenger) different forms of affirmation will be necessary for each type.
The doers are all about getting things done so affirming them means praising them for a job well done on a presentation or hitting a tough deadline.
Those who are advocates should receive praise for their role as inclusiveness-seekers that binds teams together and keeps morale up.
Idealists are dreamers who care about integrity; they should be thanked for reminding everyone of original company values.
And lastly, challengers need high levels of affirmation because they’re always looking for new solutions; you can do this by emphasizing how valuable you find their novel approach to projects.
But acknowledging personal strengths isn’t enough – professional competencies are just as important!
That’s why when congratulating someone for achieving company goals, you must also provide deep affirmation by pointing out excellent judgement of character or the talent and hardwork behind the project accomplished.
Through doing this,not only does it shows that you take notice of people’s achievement but will also leave your team feeling truly supported with more motivation!
What Effective Communicators Know: How To Affirm Others Through Profound Values
Effective communication and affirmation through effective words is a key part of strengthening people’s most profound values.
The reason for this is that we best learn and internalize our core values when they are affirmed in social contexts.
To ensure effective affirmation, it is crucial to pick the right words, which best express courage and humility.
For instance, standing up to a CEO takes courage, so recognizing and acknowledging this shows them your support and recognition for their strength of character.
Another example of displaying humility is sharing praise with colleagues instead of taking sole credit for successful projects.
In short, by using the right words like courage and humility to positively reinforce others’ values we can strengthen their identity and inner core immensely, thus leading to more success in the long run.
The Impact Of Criticism On The Brain: How To Praise Publicly And Critique Privately
Criticism can have a long-term negative effect on the brain, especially when directed towards someone in a public setting.
This is something that Anne experienced in her art class at preschool playgroup.
Her teacher, Ms.
Caldwell, publicly humiliated her for making a “mess” out of her painting – an experience which she still remembers to this day due to anxiety from the flight-or-fight response caused by the criticism.
Neuroscientists have conducted studies on how criticism activates the amygdala, impairs cognitive functioning and causes negative emotions such as fear or shame.
A study conducted by Stallen et al.
showed that social conformity is linked to parts of the brain responsible for processing emotions, and therefore receiving criticism in front of peers can make someone feel like they are being rejected by their peers.
This further undermines one’s self-belief.
These findings show how important it is to keep criticism private and make praise and affirmation public instead.
Otherwise we can cause someone long-term mental damage from our words.
How Eric Pillmore Restored Trust And Accountability In Tyco International During A Crisis
Rebuilding trust in individuals and the group can help companies overcome crises – just ask Eric Pillmore.
He knows from first-hand experience: Pillmore was appointed vice president of corporate governance at Tyco International in 2002, when the company was dealing with the after-effects of fraud by its former CEO.
In order to turn things around, Pillmore realized that he had to rebuild trust in both individuals and the organization as a whole.
He organized meetings where 230,000 Tyco employees were given an opportunity to share their concerns and ask questions of their managers.
This tactic helped reassure workers that their superiors were genuinely interested in helping them – leading to more faith in the company itself.
But this wasn’t enough: restoring individual trust only scratched the surface of a much wider strategic issue.
For that reason, further meetings were held which sought to establish transparency and accountability within teams and groups; a communications strategy designed to rebuild cross-group trust.
The results spoke for themselves: within five years, Governance Metrics rated Tyco’s corporate accountability with a perfect 10 out of 10 score!
This example shows us just how effective rebuilding trust among individuals and groups can be when it comes to coming through a crisis successfully – no matter the scale or severity.
The Rise Of Affirmation-Based Performance Review Systems
Many companies are recognizing the flaws of traditional performance review systems and are turning to more positive, affirmation-focused approaches.
Following the lead of industry giants such as Microsoft, Dell, Goldman Sachs and New York Life, businesses are minimizing if not completely getting rid of old-school ratings that put a numerical value on their workers’ efforts.
This modern approach is based on appreciation rather than pseudo-scientific calculation since it’s near impossible to put a number on certain types of work like customer service or personal development.
Instead of providing quantitative results about outcomes or data, reviews seek to recognize the additional intangible efforts made by employees in order to reach those goals.
The focus here is less concerned with whether targets have been reached but more so with how they were achieved.
Through a subjective assessment graded by broad categories like “excellent,” “very good,” “average” or “needs improvement,” bosses can highlight key competencies used to reach company objectives and express appreciation for different contributions made by individuals.
Fostering this kind of behavior encourages strength of character such as courage and self-regulation as well as building team cohesion through recognition among peers.
The Power Of Affirmation: Why Encouragement Is More Effective Than Criticism
We all know that shouting and being critical to kids doesn’t really get them to fulfill their potential – it just causes damage in the long run.
But, why do people still do it? Well, as social psychologist Barbara Fredrickson explains, because it gives short-term results.
Parents and teachers get attention from children and they do what is asked of them.
But that strategy ultimately leads to negative impacts such as low loyalty among children, difficulty bonding with authority figures and other members of their group, reduced performance levels, and a lack of personal development.
That’s when a better way of criteria comes in – Affirmative feedback.
Instead of lecturing or scolding a child for their wrong behaviors, you can relate their behavior to a certain goal where they should aspire.
This will empower the child towards achieving their goals without feeling humiliated or degraded in any way.
This strategy works well both in parenting and teaching scenarios – giving children positive encouragement along with constructive criticism will go far in helping them gain self worth while improving their performance at the same time.
It’s essential to remember that it’s much better to give kids affirmative and constructive feedback than to yell at them if we want our children or students to grow into successful adults!
Extraordinary Influence: The Science of Affirmation, is an informative and actionable book about the power of affirmation.
Through its comprehensive scientific analysis, it reveals how speaking to people’s core competencies, values, and strengths can help them become their best selves.
It also uncovers how unconstructive criticism has potentially damaging effects on the brain that can limit resourcefulness and self-confidence.
The book offers valuable advice on developing a high level of self-awareness through journaling so that you can practice positive and supportive communication with other people.
These insights empower readers to make remarkable changes in their lives and the relationships they have with others.
So if you want to develop your communication skills and start affirming those around you – this book is for you!