You’ve heard this before…
Every leadership teacher will tell you this. Every leadership book will mention this in some form or another.
Show genuine appreciation for your team.
But here’s the problem: No matter how many times this is repeated over and over and over, many leaders are still so stingy with their praise!
And they wonder why their teams are demotivated. They wonder why their teams aren’t effective. Well, it’s because their team is starving for appreciation.
So here are 3 ways you can show sincere appreciation to motivate your team and inspire them to give their best.
1. Give them the credit
Take the spotlight away from yourself and point it towards your team.
You see, people confuse leadership with stardom. They have this notion that when you’re the leader, you are the one who gets remembered and praised.
That may be true in a lot of cases. But the essence of leadership is not stardom; It is service. It is not about gaining authority; It is about giving it away. It is not about enriching yourself; It is about empowering others.
And giving your team the credit empowers them in a very meaningful way. You’re letting them know that their work matters. That their work has added value.
That they’re not some replaceable cog in a machine but an integral part of the impact your team is making in the world.
2. Point out progress
Add this one element to your appreciation.
Instead of saying “good job” and ending it there, mention their progress. Appreciate not only what they’ve done but also where they’ve been and where they can potentially go. Sounds vague, doesn’t it? Well, here’s an example…
If you see them performing a skill well, don’t just say “Hey, you’re doing a really good job at this.”
Instead, point out their progress by saying, “Hey, this is good work! I also noticed that you’re improving quickly. Last month, you could only do this but now, you’re able to do this, this, and this. Can’t wait to see how much more you’ll improve by next month. Keep it up!”
This type of appreciation communicates that you are paying attention and that you’re invested in their growth. This is highly motivating to a team.
3. Over-do thank-yous
Take it from Daniel Coyle, bestselling author of Culture Code.
He said, “When you enter highly successful cultures, the number of thank-yous you hear seems slightly over the top…. This is because thank-yous aren’t only expressions of gratitude; They’re crucial belonging cues that generate a contagious sense of safety, connection, and motivation.”
Actively look for opportunities to say thank you.
It might seem like a very simple thing. But it plants little seeds of appreciation into the culture of your team that will grow over time.
Here’s the gist…
Sincere and genuine appreciation is a powerful tool in motivating your team. And yet it also often neglected.
Here are 3 ways you can show your appreciation to bring out the best in your team:
- Give them the credit
- Point out progress
- Over-do thank-yous
These are very simple things you can do. It doesn’t require special skills or a special personality type to do them. Do these every chance you get and you will bring out the best in your team. As you communicate your appreciation, you will communicate better.
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