I know someone who used to go to work in a winter jacket and wool hat and refused to take off either article of clothing in the office. The message was clear: I am not settling in because I cannot wait to leave.
Employees struggling with frustration, exhaustion, and fear may be effectively controlling their verbal communication of these emotions, but their nonverbal expressions are telling everything.
Now's a good time to take a quick inventory:
- Are you dressing like you've stopped caring?
- Barbara Pachter, author of When the Little Things Count...and They Always Count, recommends cutting out frowns and stern expressions. You may be totally unaware of the look on your face.
- Are you looking people in the eye? Sometimes hostility, fear, or insecurity can keep our eyes on the floor, the wall, the desk—anywhere but the boss's eyes.
- Are you slouching in your desk chair? Do you roll your eyes a lot? Probably reading this is making you want to roll your eyes, but these are important tendencies to check, as reputations are often made during hard times.