"Are most of your clients women?" This is a common question I hear when I discuss ditching the drama in leadership. I think the reason for this is because there is a common myth that women are more dramatic than men. They whine, bicker and even cry. But are women leaders bigger whiners and criers than their male counterparts? I haven’t studied women in the general population but I have worked with and coached thousands of leaders. In the realm of leadership, drama does not discriminate. The misconception that there is differentiation is fueled by a lack of true understanding of what drama looks like in the workplace.
Drama is emotional expensiveness.
Drama isn’t only crying and bickering. Drama is the overall cost of an employee to an organization. It is how expensive he or she is emotionally. Emotional expensiveness can show up in many ways including but not limited to
•Withholding critical feedback
•Talking more about people than you do to them
Many times leaders who avoid conflict are the ones creating additional drama in organizations and limiting business results due to these distractions.
The skill required to ditch the drama is gender neutral.
Any leader can call their people up to greatness. Any leader can insist that their employees ask early and often, "What can I do to help?" When leaders see their employees suffering, it takes skill (meaning it is learned and not necessarily an inborn preference) to empathize with them and yet help them see the circumstances differently so that they can go forth and conquer.
Anyone can choose to be drama free.
A happy leader is one who can restore peace and sanity to the workplace.
I have seen my share of unhappy leaders. However, the ones who go home happy and manage to achieve their business goals are the ones who choose to be happy over being right. That choice includes taking some simple steps. One of the most critical steps is insisting on teamwork. Outlaw the option of judging other team members. Instead encourage your team members to focus on doing whatever it takes to accomplish your organizational goals. And leave the bitching, moaning, and whining to someone else.
Learn more about those steps by reading Reality Based Leadership or sponsor a Reality-Based Rules of the Workplace book club with your team to help them learn more about ditching the drama and being happier at work.