Categories for Managers

Practical Suggestions for Showing Appreciation in Day to Day Work Life

One of the most common questions we receive is: “How do you keep the concept of communicating appreciation going in the workplace?” We have found the following action steps to be extremely helpful in helping appreciation and encouragement become part of a workplace culture: Start your staff meetings with reports of examples of appreciation & encouragement being given.  Reinforce the importance of appreciation by starting meetings with team members sharing examples of receiving appreciation or observing someone else encouraging a colleague.  (If you wait until the end of the meeting, you’re at risk of “running out of time.”)  At the beginning, share... Continue reading...

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August 25, 2016 1:00 pm
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Why Cynicism is Good for The Workplace

It seems counterintuitive, but cynicism can be a positive influence in our workplaces. How? When people are cynical, they are giving us honest feedback about how they really feel. When was the last time that you heard a cynical remark from a colleague and you accused them of not being honest regarding how they really feel? (Aside from the sarcastic remark: “So, Janice, tells us how you really feel!”) Cynicism communicates from the heart, so you don’t have to question whether the person is being honest with their comment. Cynical remarks give us a reality check with what was said,... Continue reading...

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August 22, 2016 12:16 pm
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Do You Have a Colleague Who is Easily Offended?

Not everyone feels appreciated in the same way. The more often we communicate appreciation in the ‘language’ and specific actions preferred by our colleagues, the more likely we are to ‘hit the mark’ in truly encouraging them and helping them feel valued. As we have trained thousands of employees in the concepts of authentic appreciation (both directly and through our Appreciation at Work Certified Facilitators) we have found that: A person’s primary language of appreciation is often the language in which they are most easily offended! So if you have a colleague or supervisor who seems to get upset easily... Continue reading...

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July 23, 2016 12:23 pm
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6 Steps to Improving Your Current Employees’ Soft Skills

Let’s face it: Soft skills like critical thinking, emotional intelligence, and adaptability are necessary for all employees to have. However, the majority of attention in the management world has been focused more on hiring employees with those skills than developing them in current employees. The term “soft skills” refers to skills like collaboration, problem solving, conflict resolution, and communication, which have more to do with how you act than what you know. Much of the time, these soft skills have to be seen “in action” and can be difficult to objectively measure (unlike technical qualifications, which can be tested). However,... Continue reading...

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June 8, 2016 7:00 am
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Conflict Without Casualties: A Field Guide for Leading With Compassionate Accountability

I (Nate) have always had a problem with the notion of conflict reduction, management, or mediation. All of these concepts imply that conflict is something to be lessened or eradicated, as if it’s fundamentally a bad thing. I’m not surprised that many people would view conflict this way. Look around: Divisive political rhetoric, religious polarization, and global ideological warfare. Everywhere you look, conflict is generating casualties. Negative conflict, manifested as workplace drama, costs the US economy over $350 billion per year in the currency of broken relationships, dysfunctional teams, morale and engagement problems, and failure to thrive. I believe that... Continue reading...

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May 6, 2016 1:27 pm
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Managers Have Great Influence, According to Ethics Study

It’s a question I am asked repeatedly. How do you get managers and employees to be better givers of appreciation and recognition? After all, they’re all busy with their jobs. Surely we can’t expect more from them. Let’s examine some research carried out on how to instill ethical behaviors in a corporation. This appears to be significantly harder than trying to teach others to give recognition. We’ll see what we can learn and apply from these findings. Personal Example is a Winner A study by Drs. Avshalom M. Adam and Dalia Rachman-Moore in the Journal of Business Ethics concluded that the example from... Continue reading...

March 4, 2016 7:00 am
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The Importance of Top Down “Buy In”

My name is George Gotschall and I have been in management for about 35 years in both corporate and private enterprise.  I am currently the owner of a placement agency and a consulting company helping organizations choose their next employee wisely. In November 2014, Dr. White and Tim Hepner introduced me to the concept of Appreciation at Work and I fell in love with it!  Treating people like individuals, what a concept!  Since I am a certified behavioral analyst, the idea fit perfectly with the behavioral surveys I sell to my clients. The concept of treating employees like human beings with families,... Continue reading...

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February 9, 2016 7:00 am
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Don’t Forget—People are People, Not Machines or Rats in a Maze

Recently, I had the privilege to meet and listen to Ginger Hardage, Senior Vice President of Culture and Communications for Southwest Airlines. (I happened to be the morning keynote speaker and she was the afternoon keynote speaker.) One phrase used to describe Southwest Airlines was that they were “in the customer service business and just happened to use airplanes to help people get where they want.” Ginger’s presentation was a refreshing reminder that truly successful enterprises understand that their primary calling is to serve the customer and, that by doing so, they will be profitable.   (As opposed to the seemingly... Continue reading...

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January 17, 2016 2:50 pm
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Appreciation in an International Multi-Cultural Organization

Recently, I had the privilege to provide training in communicating authentic appreciation to the management and supervisors of an elite international organization.  Functioning within the tourism and hospitality industries, the staff (in one location) come from over 40 countries and six continents. As I approached the training, I was interested to see and hear if the staff desired to be appreciated for their work.  Additionally, I wanted to find out whether communicating appreciation in the workplace was relevant across many cultures.  Finally, I was curious to learn various ways employees felt comfortable receiving appreciation and what the challenges might be... Continue reading...

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July 29, 2015 11:47 am
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Two-Way Communication: Essential to Employee Engagement

Doug Conant, former turn-around CEO of the Campbell Soup Company, and Keven Kruse, a serial entrepreneur and popular keynote speaker, have something in common. Both believe that two-way communication is essential to employee engagement. Since employee engagement drives job satisfaction, high productivity, and low turnover, it is worth taking a minute or two to consider their perspective. What is employee engagement? It is the emotional connection that an employee has to the organization and its goals. A 2011 Gallup poll found that only 29% of the workforce is engaged at work. That means that more than two-thirds of people are... Continue reading...

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April 8, 2015 2:00 am
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