It’s often said that we judge ourselves based on our intentions, but we judge others based on their actions and impact.
If this is the case, then others aren’t judging us based on our intentions, but instead on our impact.
As a Culture Coach and consultant, I see the struggle between intention and impact every day. It is especially prevalent in how we show our value and appreciation for the people with whom we work and live.
We truly appreciate those around us, but the “to-do list” of life often gets in the way of us taking a moment for a “thank you” or “how are you?” or “what do you need?”.
Often times, we assume that our way of feeling valued and appreciated is the way that someone else does too. This is often called the “blind spot”. When it comes to showing value and appreciation to others, it’s best to not practice the Golden Rule (do unto others as you’d have done to you.) Instead, practice the Platinum Rule: Do unto others as they would like to have done to them.
Often, the way someone feels valued and appreciated is very different than what we think. We might think its about providing security, money or materials goods. At least in the workplace, this couldn’t be further from the truth. Showing value and appreciation rarely costs money. It does cost some time, which seems to be more precious these days than gold. Most people feel valued when they feel listened to, when you speak kindly and genuinely, when you include them, support them and when you truly care about what they care about.
The best selling book by Gary Chapman The Five Love Languages, has recently been put into a business context called The Five Languages of Appreciation. I just recently shared this information at an all staff off site retreat for one of my clients and it was very powerful and very enlightening information for each of them.
What the Five Languages of Appreciation says is that each of us as a “language” that we want spoken to us to make us feel valued and appreciated. Often times we end up speaking the language we like to others. If we can find out what those around us are interested in receving and shifting our behaviors to provide that, we can increase relationships success, emotional connection and engagement in both on and off work.
Here are the Five Languages of Appreciation. Which one is your language of appreciation? Is it different than the language of your team members at work or partner at home?
Words of Affirmation
Affirm their accomplishments
Compliment their character
Highlight their personality
Use spoken words and written words
Give people undivided personal attention
Hold quality, genuine conversations about topics that matter
Provide a safe environment free of judgment and defense
Give people your presence and focus
Acts of Service
Reach out to help, ask “How can I help?”
Show others you truly care
Share resources and assist
Bring food or other sustenance items
Give without buying
Give something someone finds of value
Small things matter, it’s not about the monetary value.
Ask them their favorites: music, reading, leisure, sports, entertainment, restaurants, experiences, time off
Give for a reason: milestone, anniversary, accomplishment, setback
High fives, fist bumps
Pats on the back
Firm hand shakes
Sit close to/next to them
“People will never forget how you made them feel.” – Maya Angelou
- 13 Mar, 2017
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