On positivity

In a group setting, if you’re to be a leader, you must take responsibility for the wellbeing and positivity of the group. As you read in The Culture Code by Daniel Coyle, one bad apple can destroy an entire group dynamic. However, one good apple” can negate the negativity and help a group power through the issue. You have to step up and be the positive source, especially when nobody else wants to do it.

For example, you faced negativity as you started a project at work that was supposed to be tedious and miserable. By most people’s standards, it was. I was pleased to see you look for any excuse to be positive about the project rather than an excuse to be cynical about the project. The work still had to be done whether you liked it or not. There was no reason to get down about it, and you did well not to.

I should add one caveat: if your behavior is in stark contrast to the rest of the group, they won’t be as receptive to an upbeat attitude. If everyone else is disappointed in something that happened and you make a point to be the opposite, you might be seen as a dissenter rather than a leader. It’s not about you—it’s about the group. Never let vanity take over in your leadership roles in a way that makes you act for your own appearances. If you’re not the main source of positivity, don’t be frustrated—be thankful there is another leader and that they can be a source of goodness for the rest of the group. Don’t mistake my advice on leadership as a call for you to be at the top of the food chain. To hell with the food chain. Do your job.