Thanksgiving week is coming up for people in the United States. This got me thinking about how we say thanks and what this means for business leaders and business in general. This is because a core concept of incorporating a strong sense of belonging into work culture design is that what people do in performing their work matters – a lot. Do we thank them?
There are many ways to express thanks. What I have found interesting is that there is also great value for both the person expressing gratitude and the person receiving it.
Saying thank you builds trust and engagement.
Employees who hear how what they did made a difference experience more job satisfaction and happiness. Studies show that well over 60% of employees are motivated by praise from managers and co-workers. Part of the reason is because of social acceptance. The other part of the reason is that people who know how what they do assists in achieving business goals have more goal clarity and understand their roles better. This results in fewer misunderstandings that allow stronger connections between people to form resulting in increased trust and engagement company-wide.
One tip for institutionalizing gratitude is to begin or end every business meeting with specific examples of gratitude for the little things some one did that made goals, roles and relationships more constructive and achievable.
Saying thank you makes you happier and healthier.
Saying thank you builds your immune system and reduces stress. When saying thank you is heart felt, it can melt stress in less than 60 seconds. There are many easy and replicable activities for expressing gratitude from sending a thank you note to leaving a candy heart on someone’s desk. Ultimately though, telling someone how what they did made a difference to you releases endorphins for the both of you.
However, in a study conducted by the John Templeton Foundation in 2012, Bosses were placed in the category of “never” being thanked by 35 percent of those polled. Why is that? Please share your insights below.
Saying thank you builds leadership capacity and personal power.
According to the John Templeton Foundation report, over ninety percent of survey respondents agreed that grateful bosses are more likely to succeed. Only 18 percent thought that expressing gratitude reflected poorly on the boss, making him or her appear weak.
The results also concluded that more women express appreciation then men and that hearing “thank you” made people feel good and more motivated as noted above. However, even though people recognize that they do feel better when they express their gratitude, less then 15 percent act on the impulse to express gratitude unless it is modeled in work culture behavior.
As we enter Thanksgiving week, is Thanksgiving a once a year activity or something that is expressed continually throughout the year? In my view, thanks’s giving doesn’t always require a big event to remind us to be thankful. Simply stopping to feel gratitude for something like the smell of coffee in the morning or a sunset reaps rewards. When it involves expressions of thankfulness to another human being – well that is where the magic happens.
About Dianne Crampton and TIGERS Success Series, Inc.
Dianne Crampton is the founder of TIGERS Success Series, Inc., a Central Oregon Work Culture Consultancy that helps leaders build high levels of workforce trust, interdependence, genuineness, empathy, risk and success. TIGERS offers leadership clinics, TIGERS licensing and certification, and customized leadership facilitation. Learn more at http://www.corevalues.com.