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Five Ways To Show Appreciation To Your Team
It’s so easy to take our teams for granted—especially when we’re pushing toward big goals and driving for results.
But I always remind entrepreneurs, regardless of how busy or absorbed you are, take the time to make appreciation a habit. Showing gratitude is not only important in keeping up the confidence and momentum of your team, it also correlates to the future success of your company.
Team members have choices. They have choices over how effectively they spend their time in the office, over the quality of work they put into projects, over their levels of engagement—so it only makes sense to be extremely appreciative that they spend their time contributing to our visions, ideas, and goals.
I make a point of reminding myself every day that it’s people—not machines—creating our bottom line.
“Be conscious of the fact that it’s people—not machines—creating your results.”
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As leaders, part of our skillset needs to be the ability to shift gears from a task-focused mindset to one where we’re recognizing and appreciating all the capabilities team members bring to the table.
It’s so important that we let people know the many different ways we appreciate them so they feel whole when they come into work. Here are a few sure-fire ways you can show appreciation to your team:
- Know your audience.
Everyone’s preferences when it comes to appreciation are different. Don’t assume that just because you like to be recognized in a certain way, others will as well. Get to know your team members. Some people like to be celebrated in front of a crowd while others find a handwritten card much more meaningful. Be thoughtful and make the distinction about the most effective and sincere way you can show gratitude to someone.
- Say hello and greet team members by name.
This idea may seem simple but saying “hello” to team members and addressing them by their names is a great way to recognize people. It’s also a genuine way to strengthen your relationships and connections. It feels great to be seen and known, and this is a really simple way of doing that that makes a big difference.
- Have a unique way your company celebrates wins.
If you don’t yet have a process in place for celebrating accomplishments, create one now and involve your team. Get them together to brainstorm exciting ways you can celebrate growth. When people have a reason to celebrate themselves and one another, it does incredible things for morale, relationships, and your company culture as a whole.
At Strategic Coach, we have monthly Monkey Awards—we’re fans of sock monkeys—and yearly Bubble Awards for any achievements that get us faster, easier, cheaper, and bigger results. We like to celebrate being a “bubbling company.”
- Whatever it is, be specific.
Generalities like “great job” and “good work” are empty feedback because they’re not attached to anything concrete. Giving good praise requires specifics. It’s much more powerful to explain why you liked what someone did and then to connect that to what you’d like to see them do more of. This provides people with great incentive and a boost in confidence.
- Little things go a long way.
There are also so many small ways you can show appreciation to your team that aren’t costly. For example, give them time off. If someone’s been working really hard, it goes a long way to acknowledge them for that and to let them take the afternoon off. People want to work for people who care about their well being. I’m also a fan of surprising people with gift cards or organizing informal team-building events outside of the office. Small acts of kindness make a world of difference.
How we treat our team members speaks multitudes about our effectiveness as leaders. Appreciation is a major part of the puzzle when it comes to team members’ engagement, and it separates the good leaders from great leaders.
Try implementing these appreciation strategies and see what impact it has. By really recognizing other people’s time, effort, and creative abilities, we set up a standard of caring and respect in our company culture that inspires a new level of commitment and dedication from team members.
Give your team the most fun, fulfilling, and rewarding experience of their working careers!
About the Author
Shannon is a natural collaborator who instinctively saw that a thriving Unique Ability® Team can strengthen their entrepreneur, the business, and themselves. A win-win-win. Go, team, is Shannon’s rallying cry.More Content by Shannon Waller