On-the-job compliments are a great way to give reassurance, show appreciation and build rapport with your coworkers. But how do you know if the action is genuine?
That question triggered an active interchange during the latest Breakfast Club, which explored the topic The Healing Power of Compliments. One shared outcome was agreement that recognition motivates, regardless of whether your work environment is in-person, remote or hybrid. “When I feel appreciated, I will go above and beyond,” remarked an attendee. “It makes me feel connected.”
The moderated, virtual roundtable generated dozens of helpful tips including these:
Tone: When speaking a compliment be attentive to your tone. It should reflect sincerity or else the words fall flat. If relying on technology to convey your appreciation, be sure that your audibility is strong. Distracting background noise will drown out even the most sincere tones.
Timing: The timing of a compliment matters. Don’t delay acknowledging someone’s assistance or a job well done. Be responsive in your recognition. Procrastination can dilute the message. Noted one participant, “My workplace has been extremely busy right now, and the ways we show each other appreciation during the day when we do something right, instead of focusing on mistakes, really keeps a positive attitude in the office.”
Specificity: The more specific your message of appreciation is, the more likely that compliment will come across as genuine. People can truly feel your positive emotion when the message you communicate cites their actions that drew your attention and appreciation. “You have to see yourself in the compliment. That really nails it,” added another participant.
Intentional: With remote team members, you need to be intentional about seeking out and giving positive recognition. “Being remote means you don’t run into people for random compliments, like hey, that’s a great sweater you’ve got on. There’s no water cooler chat,” pointed out a participant. For virtual teams, another participant recommended taking a few minutes during staff meetings–before signing off–to voice compliments about their virtual background or a project update that they gave.
Check out the infographic below for results of live polling conducted during last month’s Breakfast Club.