Introduction: The Issue of Emotion Management in Workplace
The emotional health of the employees is one of the key elements to the company’s success. As the management experts note: “Over the past ten years, increasing attention has been given to how workers express emotions in a variety of working setting” (Morris & Feldman, 1997, p.257). Nowadays workplace conditions tend to become more stressful and the emotional stability of the workers and overall productivity can be in danger unless necessary measures for managing potentially emotional situations undertaken. Without the proper handling of emotions, the employees may face an emotional breakdown which will inevitably affect the efficiency of the interactions in the workplace. According to The Behavioral Health Coaching Institute, “emotions can harm employees, affect how they react to pressures and be the cause of low productivity and poor results” (Dealing with emotions at work, 2008, p.2 ). Case incident illustrates the danger of ignoring the emotion management issue and proposes few technics that might be used in dealing with the stress caused by professional interactions.
Factors that Make Organizations Ineffective at Managing Emotions
There are few factors that influence the efficiency of emotion management in the organization. The first factor is that the companies not always have a strategy for tackling the emotional problems of their employees. In some organizations, the management may simply not realize the importance of the issue and treat it as something not worth of attention and not related to the working process. Moreover, the display of emotions by employees in the workplace may be viewed as inappropriate and the workers will be expected to not show any affections. The second factor, and the case incident clearly illustrates it, is that the leaders of the companies sometimes find it hard to control their own emotions, let alone being able to provide the necessary help to their workers. In the case incident, the manager finds it acceptable to display anger and often loses his temper which has a negative impact on the employees. Thus, one of the most important factors which prevent companies from effective emotion management is bad leadership. In this case, the expression of the negative emotions by the manager does not have any positive impact on the company’s goal and it leaves the workers frustrated. It is important to find balance and provide each employee with the opportunity to express their emotions.
The Importance of Strategic Use and Display of Emotions
The display of emotions at the workplace may be helpful in supporting the emotional wellbeing of the employees and, therefore, is beneficial to their productivity. However, it is a very ambiguous question which must be dealt with carefully. When the employees display emotions that were caused by work-related situations, it is important that the leaders of the company provide the workers with assistance and do their best to find out about reasons that made the worker feel that particular emotion. The case incident gives an example of chairman who never hesitated to yell at his employees whenever something went wrong. The chairman was the only one who was allowed to express his negative emotions while the employees were expected to restrain themselves. Covering up true emotions can result in a nervous breakdown or lead to the state of permanent stress. Employees should have a possibility to reveal their true emotions without the fear of negative reaction from the management of the company.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Emotions as Part of a Management Style
Speaking from the experience of working in organizations where emotions were used as a management tool, I can say that one of the advantages of this approach is that it can improve the mutual understanding between both the management and employees, and between the colleagues. When the company encourages its employees to display their emotions – positive thoughts, or their frustration over the work-related problems – it helps to create trusting and open relationships which is beneficial to the healthy and productive atmosphere in the company. By applying the proper emotion management strategies, the company may achieve better understanding of the worker’s personalities. The disadvantage to this approach is that when used inappropriately it might interfere with the working process. Sometimes employees might feel that it is suitable for them to express the emotions that are not related to the workplace: for example, emotions over personal issues.
What Company Can Do to Change Its Emotional Climate
The first problem with Laura’s company is that the employers use the negative emotions to influence their workers. For example, the management may openly express anger in order to intimidate Laura and her colleagues. As Laura states, the stuff of the company feels resentful about this emotional manipulation (Robbins & Judge, 2012, p.124). It’s obvious that this approach does not create healthy working conditions and has a negative impact on the company. To solve this problem, it is necessary that the management stops using such unproductive technics and starts treating the employees with respect. Another important aspect of the issue is that the company should let the employees expresses their feelings without fear, even if these emotions are negative and resentful and are not pleasant for the company’s management to hear.
Work can be stressful and intimidating and it can often present a risk to the emotional health of the employees. Ignoring this issue may have a negative effect on the company’s productivity: it creates tension in the workplace and prevents the establishment of trustful and open relationship between employers and employees, and between colleagues. For the sake of the company’s growth and effectiveness, the workers must have an opportunity to express their feelings without fear. It is important to acknowledge that emotions are integral part of the working process and it is necessary for the company to be able to work with the emotions of their employees.
Dealing with emotions at work: Ways to reduce conflict and control emotions for more effective workplace interactions. (2008). Web.
Morris, J. A., & Feldman, D. C. (1997). Managing emotions in the workplace. Journal of Managerial Issues, 9(2), 257-274. Web.
Robbins, S. P., & Judge, T. A (2012). Organizational Behavior (15th ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.