Dump the Grump

Dump the Grump

Grumpy ... childish word, isn't it? Fitting given it's such a childish behavior.

Be careful not to dismiss its impact because it sounds silly or seems insignificant. It can get in the way of everything and it can spread.

And when it spreads, it impedes work.

And when work is slowed or hobbled, everyone loses.

Imagine the number of grumpy moments we've had in our organizations this week alone (around the world, in your own city, in just your building). Imagine how many potentially good moments/ results/ connections we may have missed or not enjoyed as a result. Imagine the enormous amount of money it costs us (you).

I can be a grump. Pretty sad given what I do and the fact that I know it costs me money every time I am (draining the people I work with). I know I'd prefer to spend that money at some fancy restaurant with my wife and kids.

When I start indulging in my bad side, I've found it helpful to remember 4 things...


  • I'm a grown-up.
  • It's not about me.
  • I won't be here forever.
  • I want to make good things happen for other people (which in turn will make good things happen for me).

I also see the grumpy guy in the picture above and remind myself I'd rather not play the part of one of Snow White's little buddies. (He sits on my desk as a reminder. Really.)

Leaders: Below is one more important idea on what you can do to minimize grumpiness.

Hydrate. Inspire. Get Water Bottles.

One more idea...

I don't know a single leader who's addressed the issue of grumpiness at an all-employee meeting. I'd guess that's because it's perceived as childish, silly, and not worthy of attention at a "Let's Make it Happen in 20XX" meeting. (Maybe it's assumed that it's not a problem.)

What if you talked about it with your team ... today (or within the next 30 minutes)? Just your department or small group? (You could use Work Kindly or Smile & Move as a framework to the discussion.)

What if you had one of the people on your team lead the discussion to create more buy-in? (It's right out of my book, Lead Simply. It's the Involve piece of the "Model. Connect. Involve." framework.)

What if you don't? How much time, energy, and money will it continue to cost you? How many more wonderful possibilities may never see the light?

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