Praise: warm approval and admiration
How important is praise? Important. Extremely important.
Employee engagement can be many things, working with people you like, career advancement, sharing knowledge and having the ability to give back, to name a few. However, a study published in Harvard Business Review determined that simple recognition is the most important factor in employee engagement and resulted in a 0.1% increase providing $100,000 in operating income to the bottom line of each store per year.
Chester Elton, Speaker and co-author of The Carrot Principle said, “The number one driver of engagement is opportunity and well-being.” The number one driver of opportunity and well being is recognition and appreciation.”
Praise involves little effort and produces a lot in return. If you are unaccustomed to giving out praise, it can be tricky. Here are a few tips.
- The closer recognition is to the behavior, the more likely it will be repeated
- Praise followed by criticism is not praise
- Praise followed by more praise is a little too much praise
- Praise often. The more you message what’s important to you, the more people will focus on that
- Be specific
- Above all, be sincere
Specific, impromptu praise is the most powerful because it’s perceived as sincere. It emphasizes a moment that is already happening. When praise happens in a chance encounter it seems more authentic.
Praise reinforces what’s important. It acknowledges that people are good at what they do. You’re making someone happy and more excited to work with you, plus you get a sense of satisfaction too.
Praise is most powerful in this order.
- When done in front of others
- A handwritten note
- Face-to-face conversation
Make an effort to praise someone deserving today. As Harvey Mackay says, Little things don’t mean a lot – they mean everything.
The road is easier together,