I have a wall hanging next to my bed that reads “Start Each Day with a Grateful Heart.” I placed this next to my bed so that I couldn’t help but see it every morning. It’s so easy to get caught up in the day-to-day drama of work, family and other responsibilities that we might forget to be grateful for our life experiences, relationships, lessons learned, skills & talents, etc.
At the WorkHuman conference I attended last week, they had an area called the ‘Gratitude Bar.’ The purpose of this was to recognize other people who were in some way helpful to you during the conference. There were four categories in which you could recognize someone: Happiness, Enlightenment, Inclusion and Authenticity. The idea was to show gratitude by recognizing someone in the moment. This concept was designed to replicate social recognition in the workplace.
How often do you take the time show gratitude in either your personal or professional life? It’s important for our own well-being to BE grateful but it’s equally important for our interactions and relationships with others to SHOW gratitude.
In the workplace, employee recognition has a significant impact on employee engagement and happiness as well as retention. One of the WorkHuman sessions I attended was titled “Isn’t Thank You Enough?” The answer is no. A thank you is better than no thank you but after a while a thank you alone is meaningless.
By implementing gratitude into company culture, employees are more willing to spread their positive feelings with others, whether it’s helping out with a project or taking time to notice and recognizing those that have gone the extra mile. Employee recognition and appreciation can also create unique company culture and strengthen employee relationships.- The Psychological Effects of Workplace Appreciation & Gratitude, O.C. Tanner
Your assignment today folks, is to practice an attitude of gratitude in both word and deed. Let me know how it goes.
How many times have you wanted to do something that would you enrich you either personally or professionally but repeatedly told yourself you couldn’t afford it? I know I’ve been in that place SEVERAL times. I look at my bills and my bank account and think “nope- can’t do it.” But if we don’t invest in ourselves, who will?
This year I am attending the annual SHRM conference (paid for completely out of my own pocket – registration, travel and housing) and the WorkHuman conference (thankfully one of my Twitter angels arranged for a free registration for this one so I’m only on the hook for travel & housing.) I SO envy folks whose employers truly invest in their professional development and send them to conferences, etc. I almost decided not to try to attend either conference because it really is a financial stretch for me, but it’s also important to me to learn and grow in my field and to network with my peers face-to-face. Now I may not be eating when I’m there (which will really hurt in NOLA 🙂 ) but I’ll be soaking up great info and meeting great people. I plan to use these experiences (and others) to enrich both myself and my organization. These investments will not go to waste!
When was the last time you invested in yourself? If it’s been far too long ago, I implore you to look into something that will benefit you and figure out how to make it happen. Investment comes in more than one form. It can be money, time or energy (or some combination of each.) Whatever you decide to do, I guarantee you’ll be better off for it – even if it’s a struggle to make it happen.
Knowing your worth is critical in both your professional and personal life. Don’t ever be afraid to command the pay, respect, time, acknowledgement, etc. you know you deserve. Don’t let others’ perceptions of you change your perception of yourself. When you KNOW you’re great – act like it!
As an HR professional, I hear a lot about employee rewards and perks, retention incentives, etc. Working for a nonprofit, I also hear a lot about a lack of funds for offering these. Employee recognition doesn’t have to cost a lot of money. If you take the time to know your employees, you will come to understand what is important to them. When you know what is important to them, you will better be able to recognize them in meaningful ways and those ways won’t necessarily cost a lot of money. Sometimes it may not cost anything other than a little time, effort and thoughtfulness. Continue reading