Friday, May 1, 2009

Leadership: The Power of "Good Job" and "Thank-you"

I have written before about encouragement and empowerment from a larger team framework--but I want to get really personal about encouragement.

How did you feel the last time someone--like your boss, told you "Good Job!" and they meant it!

I usually flush with embarrassment because I always try to do a "Good Job", but I always appreciate being noticed, too. AND, do you feel a little bit more noticed when the boss says these words in front of others--and they are not forced or preplanned?

Sometimes I think it is easier for us to say "thank-you" to a perfect stranger (like for holding a door open for us) than it is to say "good job" or "thank-you" to our co-workers and friends. A sad commentary on where we are in our society.

OK, OK -- we get paid to do a good job, right? So it's expected?

But we all know, some good jobs are harder than others. When people really give a little of themselves and sacrifice for the team--then we, as leaders, really owe them some recognition and "thank-you" goes a long way--especially the impromptu "thanks--that was a nice job."

AND now the hard part--a forced "thank-you" or an after thought "good job" is almost as worthless as play money.

When you say these words--you must mean them and they need to be a true representation of how you feel. Otherwise, they will be seen as gratuitous.

This is the hard part for some leaders--actually recognizing the hard work of their team members and appreciating their efforts. Leaders get wrapped up in the "crisis du jour" and easily overlook the team members who are there beside them day after day.

Leaders intend to recognize the team, it just doesn't make the "top ten crises" being worked right now.

Change that.

People, and especially your team, need to be in the top ten list--every day!

"Good job!"

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