Optimism inspires the confidence of a winner

source site I’ve written earlier about the power of a positive leadership message (for example, here and here).

http://www.nbinflatables.com/writing-for-life/ The current issue of BusinessWeek, dedicated to “The Case for Optimism,” provides a good reason to dig into this topic again.

essay for doctoral admission Numerous articles in the magazine cite encouraging economic statistics indicating the “green shoots” of a coming recovery. Optimism (or pessimism) can be a self-fulfilling prophecy and BusinessWeek sets out to do its part to help spur business leaders to begin to invest again in the future, and consumers to begin to spend. When we all start to accept that the worst is likely behind us, we can begin to take actions that collectively will ensure that the worst is, indeed, behind us.

follow url PR and HR professionals have long understood the importance of positive thinking in driving confidence among employees. As Michelle Conlin writes in BusinessWeek:

“Most human resources managers base their motivational policies on a simple psychological premise: that optimistic, engaged employees are more productive and hence can help their employers grow and make more money.”

Cybercrime Dissertation Conlin provides proof that the premise is sound: a study showing that Best Buy store locationsreport a $100,000 increase in annual sales when employee engagement scores increase by 2%.

child labor thesis statement So how can a company’s communication people help drive confidence without being dismissed as vapid cheerleaders?


  • Confidence-building communication must be credible. Don’t sugar-coat bad news. Be candid in assessing challenges and disappointments, then make the case for future success built on facts and sound reasoning.
  • Hunt out real success stories and then tell employees about them. Personally congratulate and thank the employees behind the successes.
  • Find the compelling visuals to help tell these success stories. Nothing resonates more and sticks more than a good photo or video of a real person at a real moment. Capturing a truly compelling visual means thinking like a photojournalist. Don’t stage a cliched photo, like the employee and manager shaking hands and grinning at the camera. What about the person’s involvement in the improved process tells the story with authentic emotion?
  • Populate your company’s intranet with confidence-boosting information and anecdotes. In addition to messages from company leadership, the intranet might feature discussions from employees at all levels, positive news stories about your company, its people and its products, as well as opinions from analysts, bloggers or community leaders.
  • Use communication channels to help management understand problems and to move quickly to fix them; then celebrate the fixes rather than pretending the problems never existed. Analysts are cheering news today that General Motors has scuttled plans  Vuickfor a new Buick SUV soon after hearing on Twitter unfavorable comments about the SUV’s design (Tweeters complained it looked too much like an old Saturn Vue and dubbed it the “Vuick”) — evidence that the “new GM” is determined to act quickly to correct mistakes and move on.

follow - Jon Harmon


Speak Your Mind