A question I get asked a lot is…"how do I stop the whining?"
If you want to change the way people talk to you, change the way you respond. Let the team know that if they come to you with a problem, you expect them to present a solution as well.
Adam comes to you and asks, "What should I do about customer X, they want..."
You: What do you think you should do?
Adam: I dunno.
You: Consider it for a moment, what are your options?
Adam: Wow, you are really going to make me do this, huh? Okay, I think I should ….
You: Sounds good. Give it a try and let me know how it works out. (Notice the opportunity for positive feedback when they do it and it works!)
If the concern is about a co-worker, use the same technique.
Gwen: Blake is doing this and it bothers me.
You: Have you spoken to Blake about this?
Gwen: No. You’re the boss, I thought you could fix it.
You: I’m confident in your ability to work this out with Blake and I think he would prefer to hear about it directly from you.
Gwen: Well, I can try.
You: Sounds good. I appreciate you working on this and am confident you can handle it.