Seven Ways to be Thankful Like a Leader
Gratitude dies when you think it but don’t say it.
Problems and pressure suck gratitude out of your soul. But the practice of aspirational gratitude elevates you and energizes the people around you.
Fear-filled organizations have forgotten the practice of gratitude.
Seven ways to be thankful like a leader:
Think of gratitude as pouring energy into others.
#1. Make a list of 5 people and find one expression of gratitude for each one. (Do this in the parking lot before you enter the shop or office.)
If you find it challenging to express gratitude, practice in the car before walking into the office or shop.
#2. Let gratitude be the first thing out of your mouth. Begin conversations and meetings with, “I’m thankful for … .”
#3. Ask team leaders, “What praiseworthy qualities do you see in the people on your team?”
#4. Don’t wait for exceptional results to say thank you. Where would you be if everyone stopped doing the every-day-good-job they do everyday?
Negativity dominates organizations when gratitude is reserved for exceptional results.
#5. Pause, look someone in the eye, and smile, when saying thank you. (If smiling is too much for you, try curving the corners of your mouth just a little.)
#6. Add skin. Pat someone on the back. Shake hands. If you’re adventurous, pat their hand when you shake it.
#7. Walk out of work expressing gratitude.
Let gratitude be the last thing out of your mouth at the end of the day.
Get specific. Stop using “good job” as your expression of gratitude. Notice character, skills, behaviors, energy, attitudes, and progress, not just results.
When you reserve gratitude for endings, people feel they’ve arrived. Notice the work that produces endings if you want to energize work.
Gratitude opens hearts and enables commitments.
How might you be thankful like a leader today?
I like the ‘bonus benefit’ very much indeed, Dan:
“Gratitude opens hearts and enables commitments.”
To my mind, this applies to any relationship and/or leadership or management situation, and is most effectively carried out at ‘home’ … whether physically or within oneself. Gratitude grows all the right fruits. Empowered and valued people power along more effectively, I feel.
So pleased to have found your inspiring blog.
I love the thought of letting the first and last thing people hear from you be gratitude. This is great for creating an environment that people crave to be a part of.
Great post, Dan!
Thanks Josh! It’s leadership’s job to set the tone. I know the former CEO of Campbell’s Soup, Doug Conant, goes around his office thanking people at the end of the day. Now that’s something to look forward to. 🙂
Thanks Holly. It’s great that you notice that last idea. We forget how ungratefulness closes people’s hearts and drains their courage.
Thank you, Dan. Yes, so easy to forget that beautiful key, and makes such a difference when it is applied.
An interesting post with the strong message of expressing gratitude for the select few in the beginning and end of the day!
This habit can become a good inspirational source for many to get energized and produce much better results. Innovation can get boost under such healthy environment and employees to contribute well to the set organizational goals. It also provides a positivity at the workplace level and push all staff to exceed the performance parameters and be part of the winning team.
Thanks Dr. Asher. Innovation belongs in this conversation. Gratitude enables innovation. Ungratefulness is one reason everyone plays it safe.
“Gratitude dies when you think it but don’t say it” This is what I love about being able to text. Sometimes there are days when I am so busy I can’t reflect until I get home or I am going out for a walk. If I think about something positive, I text that person immediately. “Great job today on that presentation. Glad you are on the team.” We get and send texts all the time about I need this or this has blown up, but how often do we get positive texts?
…. and yes I should “Notice character, skills, behaviors, energy, attitudes, and progress, not just results.” 🙂
Always remember, “Leadership is a GIFT, given to you by your followers.”
Thanks Jim. It’s easy to forget that leadership is a gift. I work with a leader who says, “I’m nothing without the people on my team.”
It is so easy to just say “good job” I will start being specific and make it personal when expressing gratefulness.