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Preventing Stress in Organizations: How to Develop Positive Managers by Emma Donaldson-Feilder, Rachel Lewis, Joanna Yarker

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Chapter 10

Supporting Managers to Change Their Behaviour

So, the competency framework is clear, managers know the positive management behaviours they need to show, all they have to do is change their management approach to include the relevant behaviours – simple! Or maybe not so simple … changing behaviour is actually very hard, especially if the individual concerned has been behaving in particular ways for many years.

This chapter is designed to help you explore what you, as a practitioner, can do to support managers in a behaviour change process. It aims to:

  • explain why we believe behaviour change is possible;
  • take a brief look at some theoretical approaches that can help understand the process of behaviour change; and
  • explore a series of factors likely to be important when implementing interventions to help managers make changes in order to behave in more positive ways.

Behaviour Change Is Possible

A person's behaviour is shaped by a huge range of factors, including individual determinants, such as personality and attitudes, and environmental determinants, such as social norms and organizational culture. In many cases, particular ways of behaving have become so habitual, that a manager is not even conscious that they are behaving that way or that there are other ways they might behave.

One conclusion from this is that the ideal is to get managers to adopt positive management behaviour really early on in their management careers – at induction, perhaps, when they are just ...

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