Believe employees when they share what’s happening - Deepstash

Believe employees when they share what’s happening

The point of gaslighting is to instill self-doubt, so when an employee has the courage to come forward to share their experiences, leaders must start by actively listening and believing them. The employee may be coming to you because they feel safe with you. Their manager might be skilled at managing up, presenting themselves as an inclusive leader while verbally abusing employees. Or they may be coming to you because they feel they’ve exhausted all other options.

Do not minimize, deny, or invalidate what they tell you. Ask them how you can support them moving forward.

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Gaslighting at work

Gaslighting is a form of psychological abuse where an individual tries to gain power and control over you

They will lie to you and intentionally set you up to fail. They will say and do things and later deny they ever happened. They will undermine you, manipulate you, and convince you that you are the problem.

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Here are some potential warning signs

  • A manager who is gaslighting may exclude their employees from meetings. 
  • They may deny them opportunities to present their own work. 
  • They may exclude them from networking opportunities, work events, and leadership and development programs. 
  • They may gossip or joke about them. 
  • Finally, they may create a negative narrative of their performance, seeding it with their peers and senior leaders in private and public forums.

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  • If you see that a manager has excluded one of their employees from a meeting, make sure to invite them and be clear that you extended the invitation. 
  • If a manager is creating a negative narrative of an employee’s performance in talent planning sessions, speak up in the moment and ask them for evidence-based examples.
  • Enlist the help of others who have examples of their strong performance. 
  • Document what you’re observing on behalf of the employee who is the target of gaslighting.

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Focuses on helping another person learn in ways that let him or her keep growing afterward. 

Its purpose is to increase effectiveness, broaden thinking, identify strengths and set and achieve challenging goals.

It is based on asking rather than telling, on provoking thought rather than giving directions and on holding a person accountable for his or her goals.

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The role of managers are changing

Gartner analysis shows that 46% of the workforce is projected to be working hybrid in the near future for midsize companies. Employees will have more choices about where, when, and how much they work.

In the past, managers used to be selected and promoted if they were able to manage and evaluate the performance of employees. Now managers are increasingly hired based on their ability to be great coaches and teachers.

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Behaviors of highly engaged employees
  1. They do not use their problems as an excuse from mistakes. They don't let the problem affect their ability to perform.
  2. They know how to take accountability for their actions.
  3. They are independent and are proactive in learning how to solve problems on their own until a collaboration is needed.
  4. They explore different methods on how they can do their best work and focus on their strengths, not their weaknesses.

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