Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Showing Thanks -- It’s Easy to Do & Pays Dividends

Kindness and empathy truly do matter in the workplace.

The Gallup organization did a poll and asked 8 million people to respond to this statement: “My supervisor, or someone at work, seems to care about me as a person.”

The result was that people who agreed with this thought were more productive, had strong client relationships, and longevity with the firm. We spend most of our waking hours at work. So, ensuring this statement is true is critical.

Everyone has a bad day, but if you manage others, remember the impact that your words and actions have.

Many times you are not even aware of the subconscious “communication” your body language and eye contact offers others.

So, I suggest you make a CONCIOUS effort to choose your words carefully -- two, in particular.

Say “thank you.”

Sure, it sounds so easy to do – but how often do you show gratitude for members of your team and others around you?

You may think that you are thanking people (and in your head, you are!), but does it actually happen?

You may think you appreciate others, but take a step back and re-evaluate your behavior. There is more than likely room for improvement.

I suggest keeping a daily log or journal of thanks – it may seem hokey, but I guarantee it will reap rewards.

Track how many times you say “thank you” during the business day, and to whom it was said – Joe in accounting, your assistant, client, the mailman, UPS delivery man, or your boss.

These “thank-yous” can be conveyed in person, via e-mails, IMs and text messages, or on the phone. Of course, nothing beats a handwritten note. Just track them during the course of one work week, and see the results.

You don’t have to go overboard, just be genuine. Believe me, people can see through fakeness and transparent attempts to curry favor.

I guarantee you will have a more positive work environment, with more smiling faces. And, over time, your “thank-you” efforts will pay off with increased employee loyalty and longevity, and increased sales.

Two words, said with sincerity and repeatedly – thank you. Try it today. Thank you.

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