Assertive Behaviour Works At Work!

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businessmen demonstrating assertive behaviour at work.

Photo by Horasis

Assertive behaviour is a useful communication tool that can work for you. Being assertive helps you increase your self esteem, make effective decisions, and improve your communication skills. Being assertive is not being aggressive! An aggressive approach is: “I’m ok, you’re not.” An assertive approach is: “I’m ok, and you’re ok too!” Sometimes speaking up for yourself can be challenging. You may feel intimidated, or unsure of what to say, how to say it, and when to say it. Becoming assertive is expressing clear and direct communication without subliminal, hostile, condescending, or indirect underlying messages.

How can you become more assertive?

Stop apologizing unnecessarily. If you were wrong say so. Continuous apologizing casts you as the perpetual victim, and you are not. Don’t apologize for your perceived shortcomings, for something that has not happened, or my personal favorite, for something that someone else is trying to make YOU feel guilty or responsible for.

Listen first to make sure you completely understand. If you do not understand, ask for clarification. Be reasonable and flexible in negotiating to achieve a win-win solution. Understanding your co-workers preferred communication styles can help you determine your best response, especially during challenging situations.

Learn how to choose your responses effectively by incorporating strong words. Develop positive body language to help convey your positive attitude and personal strength. And remember in order to make assertiveness work for you at work it is not only what you say and do, but how you say and do it!

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