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Contingent Self-Esteem: Why Your Employees Need Permission and What to Do About It

Photo by Fauzan Saari on Unsplash

What Is Contingent Self-Esteem?

In other words, those who experience contingent self-esteem require the direct or indirect approval of others to determine how they value themselves.

Contingent Self-Esteem in Action

Millennial workers are not complacent; they’re afraid of losing their very fragile grasp on their own sense of self-worth.

How to Address the Phenomenon Head On

Set What Expectations Are

Pay Attention to How Feedback Is Delivered

Feedback that is specific, personal, and actionable is more likely to be taken, but what matters most when it comes to establishing security is whether the feedback targets the person, or their actions.

Know What You Reward and Punish

You can’t ask everyone to be everything. Risk-taking comes with higher rates of short-term failure. Self-managing usually involves more mistakes because of trial-and-error. Taking ownership for the first time means a higher chance of falling short on responsibilities because of lack of experience.

Parting Words

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Alida Miranda-Wolff

Teaching Love. Scaling Empathy. Founder & CEO of Ethos Talent. Executive Director of Embolden & Co. Program Director for 1871’s WIC Accelerator.