The JAM Factor … Using joy and motivation to create positive change in the workplace!
We all know a good workplace when we're in one. The kind of workplace where you want to stay busy, like your job, feel supported to do it, and feel like the things you do really make a difference.
That kind of workplace.
We also know the opposite kind of workplace. We've all been there sometime in our careers, and it's near agony to feel effective in an environment where you find continual conflict, few opportunities for growth and development, chaos, no synergy, little or no input in the decision making process, and a work-life balance that leaves little time for the things you really love… like family, for instance.
Enter the Jam Factor. It's the one thing that you have control over. In an environment that might not be ready for the many differences you as an employee, bring to the table… the JAM factor allows you the option of choosing a different response when faced with shut-down, burn-out, stress, job dissatisfaction, and malaise and lethargy in the workplace. You can choose to use joy and motivation as a means of helping and supporting others while actually being encouraged yourself.
So what is the JAM Factor? It's a way of being that chooses joy and motivation to create positive communications with others in the workplace, regardless of position or title. It's a way of choosing to look at conflict. It's a way of celebrating the diversity we find in every workplace, by finding commonalities and then, building on those. People are different and create the kind of diversity that doesn't base itself on color, race or religion, hourly vs. salaried position, or interpretations of what a person is supposed to be and act like. Diversity occurs at some point, simply because we're unique.
We are aware since childhood, that when people don't live up to other's expectations, on the job, or off the job, one can expect conflict. We learned that on the playground. In the workplace, we need to search for commonalities that build bridges across our differences, and bring us together. It starts with choosing to be real, letting people see our authentic selves, and then being willing to make the personal changes necessary to promote positive interactions in the workplace. Not an easy assignment when one is frustrated, discouraged or uninspired at work. Personal responsibility in creating change plays a huge part in gaining the benefit of the JAM Factor.
The JAM Factor frees people to use something that doesn't cost a dime, won't cause a burden on time management, and allows creativity to flourish in making investments in people, even under fire or adverse circumstances. Joy and motivation allow support for building relationships and connections based on positive input and feedback. People feel good when around it and trust more easily when they feel they are being listened to and encouraged. In business, quality relationships built at the top line, most often determine quality or profitability at the bottom line. Let's be real…isn't that the end result desired by every effective workplace?
The JAM Factor helps in coping with the changes that must occur when employers, employees and co-workers don't see eye to eye. Face it; we are never going to see things in the same manner with different people. Life just doesn't work that way. But there are some basic things we can choose to do when bringing joy and motivation into the work place.
||Some of these are:
- Smile more. People tend to mirror our dispositions and give us back what we give. Smile a lot and people will notice you smiling. It will trigger a different response the more often they see you smiling.
- Treat the other people in your workplace like you want to be treated. Even if it's hard, do it anyway… because you'll get some benefit out of it. The benefit may be the kind you can't measure, because it's only palpable in the moment. Always remember someone is watching you, and it may be a person that can help you later.
- Be in the moment with others. Make it about them and not about you. Make eye contact when they speak to you. Act interested in what they are saying. Listen more attentively. Display positive body language. Pause and reflect on what they are saying, rather than what you are going to say in response.
- Think outside yourself and look for ways to express joy in the places you do your work. Maybe it's an inspiring aphorism that hangs above your desk, a way you sign your emails, the way you sound when you answer the phone. Light up when you talk on the phone. It gets people's attention differently and makes them listen to you more carefully, even if only for curiosity's sake.
- Remember that laughter is good for what ails you. Find humorous ways to deal with job stress. That doesn't mean taking your job less seriously. Laughter tends to encourage people to be more optimistic and positive in expecting and defining outcomes. In other words, it helps in staying hopeful that the difficulty will pass and puts the focus back on the moment.
The JAM Factor helps in learning to cope when you know you're at the right place. You know intrinsically that the job is right for you. So, start acting like it. Use the Jam Factor to own it, and let the workplace know you're committed to smiling through the work day, pleasant in your dealings with others, concerned for their needs and willing to share ways to send positive messages in the workplace. You never know, when they hear you laughing, they might start smiling as they wonder what you're up to!