10 June 2021
A week ago, I came across a Newsletter called The Gratitude Journal. As it’s one of my favorite subject, I thought I would check it out. What a nice surprise. An article entitled “Gratitude is Vital to Managing Remote Teams. Here’s Why” by Chester Elton caught my attention and I went deeper. I would like to share some observations by Chester Elton.
In the past 18 months, employees have gotten really good at working from home. Chester interviewed Robert Glazer (author of How to Thrive in the Virtual Workplace). Robert says part of managing remote employees is setting clear expectations and consistently tracking employees outcome. Managers & Leaders who regularly connect with their direct reports make them feel valued.
Gratitude is key to connect with the remote workforce by providing 3 easy steps.
Make Gratitude Focus on Accomplishments
With many Organizations working remotely, employees may feel their Bosses don’t notice their hard work. Consistently expressing gratitude, publicly or privately help address this pain point. Bob says it’s crucial to show gratitude right away. His favorite is to send a simple handwritten note of thanks. Thank individual team members and not just the team when sharing the team’s win.
Check-in with Gratitude
Bob suggests regularly reach out to others in the Organization – colleagues, team mates or even your Manager – let them know how grateful you are to work with them. These small check-in’s will strengthen the bond within the team, especially while working from home. It’s an excellent way to energize ourselves. When we ground ourselves in gratitude for our colleagues, we will find time to push forward.
Create Gratitude Buffers
When working from home, there is a lack of commute, which helps us separate our work and our home lives. Having a morning & evening routine will help you transition out of work mode and into your home life. Bob recommends starting a Gratitude Journal & write down three 3 to 5 things you’re grateful for on a daily basis.
Building more gratitude into your life and leadership will help you thrive and inspire others.
Thank you Chester Elton & Robert Glazer for the beautiful insights on Gratitude.
In my The Leader As Coach workshops, I have one activity on Validation – acknowledgement, affirmation & appreciation. My question to my participants: Do you think Malaysian Leaders score high marks on validating their staff for a job well done? The response would be an resounding NO! Many Bosses think that people are already paid to do their job, so they should be grateful. Why do I need to say Thank You? What Bosses do not realize is that a simple Thank You goes a long way. If done sincerely & with authenticity, the impact is deep.
A few good Organizations do have the once a year Recognition Awards that come with a plaque and some token of appreciation. That’s good but don’t you think frequent praise & appreciation when we notice the employees did something well, will bring forth higher motivation? A research by OC Tanner found that employees who were praised more frequently like once every month has twice the level of morale than those who were praised once a year. Think about it…appreciation once a month verses recognition once a year!
The research article by OC Tanner is entitled “The Easiest Thing You Can Do to be a Great Boss” Why is the Easiest Thing? It does not cost a single cent. Just the authenticity of a sincere appreciation if we observed a job well done.
And how do we go about praising? Besides the simple Thank You, which is great, Leaders can do better. Validating a person extrinsically (or externally) is nice but it does not touch the person’s heart. Validating intrinsically (internally) will go deeper. Charming Smile! Amazing cheek bones! You look super! Well done! are all extrinsic validation. They are good. Even better would be validation that touches the heart and makes them remember you for how you make them feel?
I’d like to leave you with the triple A formula that works every time when y9u want to praise someone the next time.
Acknowledge pay attention, affirm what is done well
Appreciate express gratitude & thankfulness
Amplify tell how their action matters & how it has impact people or things
And lastly, Leaders must learn how to P-A-R-T-Y!
“People will forget what you said, People will forget what you do, but People will never forget how you make them feel” Maya Angelou
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