When Personal Lives and Work Lives Collide
By the Team at Mitchell Management Consulting

“People are inherently and genetically different. When we truly understand the people around us, we will become successful entrepreneurs, dedicated employees & friendlier colleagues. It’s when we try to make people think like we think and act like we act, that we end up firing employees, quitting jobs.” Hanny Lerner

Being a good boss is about being in touch. Of course, you should be in touch with your financials, projects and stakeholders.

But the mark of a truly successful boss is one who is in touch with his or her employees.

Pay Attention To Shifts in Behavior

Paying attention to your employees’ daily habits, behaviors and actions will cue you in when something is going on in their home life that can affect their work life.

For example, you may notice that your normally outgoing sales executive, who enjoys being the center of attention, has become quiet and reserved.

Or, you may notice your normally organized project manager is showing up late to work and is missing deadlines.

These shifts in behaviors should set off an alarm in your head: something is wrong.

But what can you do if you think something is affecting your employee?

Address the Issue With Understanding

First and foremost, you need to address your employee person to person.

It can be easier to pretend that work lives and personal lives are separate, and that you should never be confronted with something from an employee’s personal life.

But the truth is, everyone’s personal lives affect their work lives.

It is important to approach your upset employee with compassion first. If you are not personally closes to this employee, it may be appropriate to bring in their direct manager or trusted peer who may have a tighter rapport with him or her.

Once the issue is identified and discussed, all there is left to do is create a plan that will help ease their troubles at work.

Resolve and Push Forward

In the end, it is your employee’s job to amend their personal lives. But by the mere act of you inquiring about their wellbeing, you can garner some trust and appreciation from them.

So remember: the next time you notice an employee not acting like themselves, address it.

True leaders notice and care for their workforces.

As Dr. Steven J. Stowell said, “Great leaders find ways to connect with their people and help them fulfill their potential.”