Screaming at people is not an option

“Don’t you ever do this again”, the manager screams into the telephone. What sounds like a scene in a 90s wallstreet movie is still happening today in the corporate world. Less frequent for sure – but there are still people around who believe that screaming in business is a valid way of communication.

The aggressor surely feels superior using his loud voice to intimidate the oponent (aka the team member or colleague) and stop an unwanted conversation or reply. The consequence almost always is a hurt relationship that soon will break if there is no apology.

Let’s examine why someone uses screaming as a communication tool. The effect of having screamed is a reduced stress level. Someone feels better. Therefore, the assumption seems valid that people who scream in business are under a high amount of stress. The ‘problem’ is that they see screaming as an appropriate way of handling this stress level.

And this is one of the moments, when leadership steps in. As a good leader, you sometimes feel like screaming but you don’t do it. You would love to tell someone how stupid he/she is – and yet you don’t. Why? Because you have learned to handle your stress level and you know that screaming at people is not the option you are looking for.

This behaviour is either based on the company culture or the culture that the leader has defined for him/herself. Whatever it is, there are other ways to reduce stress and to stay professional in communication with your team members and colleagues.

This leads to the question: how do you reduce stress?

You need to find your personal way. Sports, walks outside, listening to music, reading, writing … there are million ways of reducing stress in your life. It requires you to get into the driver seat of your life and decide what you want, what you need and how you get that.

On a special note regarding home office in the pandemic situation:

Everyone has been through a special year with a lot of uncertainty. Uncertainty causes stress. And it is that kind of stress that doesn’t go away because you take one long walk. It requires constant reflection, resilience, hope and vision to walk through.

It is an extreme situation in which we are all together – and then again everyone with a very unique variance. Therefore, let’s be special caucious not to put our stress on our colleagues or team members. They have to carry enough. Speak kind words. Encourage each other. And for sure: don’t scream at people in this special time.

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