“It would be better if they didn’t do anything at all,” Cheryl said.
We were discussing ways her organization’s leadership expressed appreciation to their employees. She immediately focused on the annual Christmas dinner.
“To get into the room, you had to pass by the president and shake his hand. He said the same thing to every single person. ‘We’re so grateful for all you do.’ It was unbelievable. You heard him say those exact words to the five people ahead of you. Then he said them to you. He has no idea who I am, much less what I do. I honestly wanted to punch him.”
“Punch him?” That seemed a little harsh.
“Yes!” She was serious. “All year long they treat us like replaceable cogs in a machine. Then for one hour they serve us a subpar meal and pretend they really care about us. It’s dishonest and demeaning.”
Appreciation is best served in small doses on a regular basis. A team whose leader regularly says, “Thank you” and shows gratitude for the everyday work team members accomplish is much more likely to feel appreciated than one who is thanked by a big event once a year.
Do you appreciate your team? More importantly, do they feel appreciated? Take a minute right now to think of three ways you can genuinely show your appreciation this month. Then do them.