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Use an Attitude of Gratitude to Strengthen Your Team
By Judy Kneiszel

Each year in late November, people gather with family or friends for the sole purpose of being thankful.

Carrying that attitude of gratitude over into the workplace and acting on it every day is one of the simplest ways to build strong teams within a company.

A study by the American Psychological Association shows that 93 percent of employees try their best in the workplace if they feel recognized and appreciated. But showing gratitude in the workplace doesn’t just improve individual performance; it can also help improve the team and organizational structure.

Research from the employee performance and talent management software company Workhuman has found that people who have been thanked at work in the last month are:
  • Half as likely to be looking for a new job,
  • More than twice as likely to be highly engaged,
  • More than twice as likely to feel respected at work, and
  • More than three times as likely to see a path to grow in the organization.
Bring Thanksgiving to work every day

While bringing leftover turkey for lunch might extend the holiday into your work life temporarily, there are better ways to bring Thanksgiving to work every day. To show employees you appreciate their talents, efforts, and accomplishments, you should:
  • Set an example. If you take the time to show gratitude to your team members, other managers are more likely to do the same.
  • Be prompt. Say thank you to a team member for a job well done right away. Don’t wait until a meeting weeks later.
  • Mix it up. Show appreciation in a variety of ways. Maybe a handwritten note, a small gift card, or some company swag.
  • Personalize it. Understand the differences between people on your team when you’re acknowledging their work. Some employees appreciate public shout-outs, while others might prefer one-on-one meetings to receive positive feedback.
  • Be consistent. Show appreciation daily. And to have the greatest impact on workplace culture, ask other managers to do this, too.
  • Be genuine. Employees need to feel that you really mean what you say.
While the Thanksgiving holiday goes by fast, gratitude should be a year-round endeavor.

Saying “thank you” to employees on a daily basis improves workplace relationships and puts your employees in a good mood. As a result, those employees have positive emotions, which reflect on their workplace performance, which is ... something to be grateful for.

 
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