If you want to make your workplace a better place -- after all, you spend a large chunk of your day there -- start by giving the people around you a reason to smile. The next time a co-worker does something amazing, head over to her desk and tell her "Good job!" Giving praise feels great, but getting praise feels even better than great, right? When the kudos spread through the office and everyone feels appreciated, your boss may notice that more work is getting done -- on time and under budget, no less.
Sincere and Professional
When you thank someone for a job well done, make sure the praise is sincere. If you can't praise the finished product, voice your appreciation for the hard work that went into the project. Keep the workplace praise professional. Your assistant may be wearing an adorable flirty skirt, but she'll appreciate your praise of her abilities as an accountant more than your admiration of her taste in clothes.
While there's nothing wrong with giving praise behind closed doors, an awesome job deserves a public shout-out. Treat the team to lunch when a project is completed under budget, or send out an email to the entire organization congratulating an employee for a well-earned promotion. If the accomplishment is newsworthy in the community or in your industry, send out a press release to let outsiders share in the celebration.
Morale-building praise comes with an expiration date. Recognize accomplishments as close to their time of completion as possible. If a team works on a special project nights and weekends for a month to meet a critical deadline, give the team members encouragement during the long days and nights -- not six weeks later when they are already involved in another big project. By then, they have already forgotten the rush of satisfaction that comes with successfully completing a big job.
Praise is not a one-time action. Look for reasons to compliment others on a regular basis. Not only will you make them feel good, they will recognize that you care and are aware of what goes on around you. Kudos to you! Repeated encouragement is particularly important to people who are struggling with new concepts or against insurmountable odds, as it shows you support their efforts.
- Monster: Motivation in the Workplace: Nurture, Praise, Repeat
- Toyota-Lift of Minnesota: The Workplace: Praise, Reprimands N' More
- The Leader as a Mensch: Become the Kind of Person Others Want to Follow; Bruna Martinuzzi
- Brand X Pictures/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images