The positivity ratio is a concept in positive psychology suggesting that a ratio of positive to negative emotions distinguishes “flourishing” people from “languishing” people.
The ratio was proposed by Marcial Losada and psychologist Barbara Fredrickson, who identified a ratio of positive to negative affect of exactly 2.9013 as separating flourishing from languishing individuals in a 2005 paper in American Psychologist. This means that in order for any person or team to flourish we need to have about 3 to 1 positive versus negative experiences.
We recently discussed the positivity ratios suggested by Barbara Fredrickson in a few training sessions. In many of my training sessions, we get some negative feedback when we suggest that we need to be on the lookout for good things in our teams and followers and give them feedback on that more than corrective/constructive/negative type feedback which is the common diet we live on. This negative pushback is often because leaders and managers often don’t believe that their subordinates are as competent as they should be and that the subordinates need corrective feedback more than positive feedback.
To challenge your thinking on this, have a look at this video:
The moral of the story is this: “If you’re not looking out for it, you won’t see it”
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