Not too long ago during an on-site company-wide training I heard employees frequently express their desire for managers and owners “to acknowledge the positive things that they (the employees) were doing.”
I have found this to be a common employee complaint for many businesses. Employees feel frustrated when they only get attention from leaders or management when they are doing something wrong – instead of when they are doing things right.
Because of this incident, I decided to open up one of my leadership meetings with requesting that the business owner acknowledge something that he sincerely appreciated about each manager/leader on her team.
I then encouraged each leader to share with their team members something specific that they appreciated about each of their team members.
One of the leaders shared, “You know it’s interesting, even though I thank my team members at the end of the day, I’ve realized that I don’t thank them for anything in particular, I just say “thank you.”
I’m realizing the importance in being specific and telling them exactly what they have done that is worthy of acknowledgement.
Consider for a moment how great it feels when someone acknowledges you whether at work or in your personal life. You probably have the experience of feeling instantly better, and even proud of yourself.
Acknowledgement has a significantly positive impact on both the giver and receiver. The person receiving the complements benefits from being complimented and the person giving the compliment benefits by having the opportunity to experience gratitude for the good things that are taking place in the work place.
Make sure you take these 3 steps to powerfully acknowledge a team member.
- Start with a simple thank you.
- Tell them exactly why you are acknowledging them. In other words, don’t just say, “Thank you for doing a great job today.” Tell them specifically what they did that made you realize they had done a great job. Instead you might say, “Thank for taking the extra time to follow up with your prospect today.”
- And finally tell them how their actions impacted you or someone else. One way this might sound is, “I overheard you talking to one of your customers today. I could tell that you were being really present and thoughtful. When that customer walked out of the store today, I could tell that they genuinely felt listened to and that you really made a difference for them. It made me feel proud and excited to have an employee like you on my team who really cares about customers and going the extra mile.”
My coach’s request is for you to set the intention to acknowledge two people in your workplace today. And decide today that as a leader, you are going to create a work culture that is filled with positive acknowledgement – where team members feel appreciated and valued!