‘Hey! Thanks for what you did today. Good Job!’, When was the last time you heard this? If recently, then congratulations, you are working in a good company! While you may feel lucky to get due recognition for your work, you are a part of the minority. And there are chances that you may feel undervalued or ignored in the coming future.
We know this might have frustrated you but people out there often complain about not being valued for their contributions to organisations. When companies analyse their culture, ‘gratitude’ isn’t a characteristic that pops up, but we all know how important it is for the success of a business.
The world out there constantly throws boatloads of challenges at us and it is the practice of gratitude that equips leaders and employees with strategies and mechanisms to overcome the hurdles and emerge victorious.
The Power of Gratitude
Showing gratitude is one of the simplest yet most powerful things humans can do for each other.
Gratitude is a positive emotion that arises when you are aware of what you have and are thankful for it. Feeling appreciated at the workplace is a fundamental desire of employees, and appreciated employees are likely to be more productive, loyal, and satisfied in their roles and responsibilities.
Well, if it sounds like a cheesy topic to you, research has shown that gratitude can truly impact a person’s mental and physical well-being, as well as their work performance.
Research on this subject didn’t take off until the 1950s, as different sociologists and psychologists began to examine and analyse the impact of gratitude on people.
How To Cultivate Gratitude?
Promoting gratitude in the workplace can be a tough row to hoe in this fast-paced working world but there is nothing which is not possible. Here are a few ways to cultivate gratitude in your organisation:
Time Is The Ultimate Weapon
Devote time to important relationships daily. Sometimes, what employees crave for, is someone who can listen to all their problems and the solutions they could come up with. And at that moment, a pat on the back can do wonders. Think about it!
And when they actually implement the solution and reach a significant milestone, congratulate them wholeheartedly for their success. You can demonstrate your gratitude by meeting them personally, doing a phone call, writing a handwritten note, or writing an email.
You can also do a newsletter shout-out to an employee who has made an exemplary effort, this will not only encourage him/her but the entire team that will also strive to get the same recognition one day. Another option can be to throw appreciation parties for employees to celebrate their tenure.
What About Those Who Never Get Thanked?
Every organisation has a class of employees that gets all the benefits and recognition. In universities, it’s the faculty. In management firms, it’s the marketers & sales representatives. In hospitals, it’s the doctors. But what about those who manage the invoices, solve customers’ grievances, and mop the floors?
Thanking the people who do thankless work holds a lot of significance as it sets the bar. It’s the top management that does all the research and core work to take a company to heights but without a cadre of staff that always supports them, the entire work cycle can get disrupted.
Thanking those who never get thanked broadens everyone’s understanding of how business functions and therefore leads to an increase in trust and improvement in morale in the longer run.
Education Is The Key
And here’s the most powerful weapon to teach someone to show gratitude… Education
You can send out blog posts, articles, research studies, case studies, and opinion pieces on the benefits of gratitude. Once employees understand the benefits on their own, they will be more inclined to practice gratitude.
When they start extending gratitude to each other, they get a better sense of what wonders can gratitude do to their productivity. You can also provide employees with printouts that they can fill out and send to one another. Ask employees to give at least one thank you note to their teammates in a week.
Do you really need to wait for something huge to happen to thank someone? Not really! How about thanking an office boy, peon, guard, or orderly who gets the morning tea and evening coffee?
Employees should always thank every person in the office who renders their service to them. Encourage mindful behaviour as this will help employees become more aware of their surroundings and notice little things happening around them.
- Involve Employees in Community Service Projects
When you introduce employees to volunteering, you teach and promote gratitude. Provide employees with information on local organisations and NGOs that are looking for active volunteers. If you are able to, plan a team outing on a weekend for employees to volunteer together.
Building a cultured workplace starts with saying ‘Thanks’. Gratitude is not a one-day activity, but rather something to be practised every day. Make your team cohesive by cultivating a culture of gratitude at the workplace.