There is a difference between a simple thank you and appreciation. While appreciation begins with thankfulness, it goes a step further by recognizing the value and significance of others. In Acts 20:2 it says that “…(Paul) gave constant encouragement, lifting their spirits and charging them with fresh hope” (MSG). That’s much more than a passing “thank you!”
As a leader look for specific ways to appreciate others. Frankly, some of us feel uncomfortable with that. Maybe we didn’t grow up with that kind of encouragement. However, one thing is certain: We all need it!
One article I read stated that in high-performing teams, the expression of positive feedback outweighs that of negative feedback by a ratio of 5.6 to 1. By contrast, low-performing teams have a ratio of .36 to 1 (Source: Researcher Marcial Losada.)
Here are two areas you can look for in appreciating the value of others.
Appreciate the value of what they do. Notice what others are doing right. Tell them how important they are and the difference they make. Look for the positive qualities and contributions they make to the team. The more specific, the more impact it will be.
Appreciate the value of what they say. We need other people’s perspective. Even when someone disagrees, don’t react. Listen! Andy Stanley points out that “Leaders who don’t listen will eventually be surrounded by people who have nothing to say.” Ask for input and let them know how much you appreciate them for it!
BEFORE YOU GO…
A caution: you should never show appreciation with ulterior motives. However, the single highest motivator in the workplace, according to one study, was whether or not the boss genuinely cared about them! (Source: Towers Watson). A person who feels appreciated will always do more than what is expected.
Who do you need to show genuine appreciation to?