In the spirit of Valentine’s Day, I’ve got a question for all you Negative Nancys out there “where is the love?”
I recently spent some time with an unnamed Alpha. It was an enjoyable visit, but over time a theme emerged; everyone wanted to complain to me. “So and so is doing this wrong” or “so and so is breaking this rule” or “the IFC is really making things tough on us” and on it went. Sound familiar?
Of course it does!!! This happens all the time everywhere, I just happened to realize it recently. Everybody loves to point out problems, criticize, and create drama. Negativity breeds negativity. Poor attitudes lead to poor performance. Poor performance leads to poor morale. And before you know it, there’s a whole lot of suck going around. And who wants to be a part of that kind of culture? Not recruits. Not girls. Not alumni.
Do I have your attention?
Why do people love complaining/criticizing/pouting? Because it’s easier than being part of the solution. Bickering only requires you to move your mouth. Solving a problem requires that you use your brain.
Well I am here today to be a part of the solution. What’s that solution, you ask? *SHOW SOME LOVE*
Back to the aforementioned visit; the negativity became intolerable, and eventually I started asking everybody “Can you tell me something that’s going right?”
wait for it….
Brothers legitimately struggled to tell me something that they felt good about. Wow. That’s disheartening.
Let me ask you this: what is it about your Alpha that you feel really good about at the moment? Which Brothers have been stepping up to the plate lately in an admirable way? Who is the unsung hero of an athletic team? What upperclassman Brother has really been sticking out his term during the dog-days of senior year? Do you have an answer? Have you shared it with anybody?
A wise woman once said “Be thankful for what you have; you’ll end up having more. If you concentrate on what you don’t have, you will never, ever have enough.”
Focus on Negativity and you’ll get Negativity.
Starting today, gentlemen, we focus on positivity. So how can your Alpha bring more positivity into it’s operations? Here are three ideas to improve morale:
1) Brother/Pledge of the Week
– Many Alphas already employ this, and it’s a great way to boost morale and effort. The Brother/Pledge of the week is an individual who goes above and beyond to exhibit gentlemanly behavior, bring positive criticism upon the organization, or set aside their selfish desires. Take a couple of minutes at the beginning of the meeting to recognize these individuals who are living proof of the Chi Psi spirit.
2) Senior spotlight
– Are your upperclassmen Brothers checking out of your Alpha? Here’s an idea. Give them the spotlight. Allocate time during the weekly meeting to highlight one or two of your senior Brothers. Have them stand up and ask for volunteers to share fond memories about that Brother. Recount their past involvement, positions held, contributions made, etc. Show them your appreciation for their years of devotion to Chi Psi. I’ll bet that you find your senior class rejuvenated in no time.
3) Good news mandate
– Every week the Central Office Staff meeting ends with a ‘good news mandate.’ The last thing we do before we break and get back to our Chi Psi work is share a reason for optimism. At the end of your weekly meeting, call on a handful of Brothers (or go around the room to every Brother) and ask them to share a brief bit of good Chi Psi news. Remember, positivity breeds positivity.
Those are just a few of the ways your Alpha can improve morale and create a culture of positivity. Give them a try, and see how a shift in attitude can lead to an enriched Chi Psi experience.