Giving feedback on another's performance and behaviour at work - both positive and negative - is probably the most simple and cost effective means of improving performance. Yet commonly L&D professionals report a reluctance in management and staff to engage in feedback. At the same time UK employees report not receiving enough of it. We know that giving feedback should not be restricted to the annual performance appraisal meeting. In high performance company cultures, giving and receiving feedback constructively is a normal part of the working day. So how can managers and teams be encouraged to do more of it?
Given our expertise in coaching psychology we are sometimes asked to work with challenging and difficult people to help them find more appropriate and constructive behaviours in the workplace. More frequently we encounter so-called 'dark' behaviours in our coaching work - sometimes directly with the coachee but more commonly when identified in leaders, managers and colleagues.
Generally these are 'unhelpful' behaviours that people express when they are stressed and under pressure. More extreme are the personality disorders such as narcissistic and psychopathic personality disorders which are more common than many people realise (it is estimated that approximately 10% of the population have psychopathic tendencies and another 10% have either a borderline or a narcissistic personality disorder).
Whether the individual is expressing highly stressed behaviour or a personality disorder, the negative impact on people and business can be extreme. This is exacerbated by the prevalence of these disorders in people at senior levels in organisations where their power and influence is heightened.
People with these behaviours are generally difficult to work with and to manage. Understanding of these behaviours in the general population is limited. The following article from Psychology Today nicely and clearly explains narcissism at work and provides some accurate and reliable indicators to watch for: Narcissism at Work. If you would like to discuss these behaviours in your business and how we can help get in touch.