Monday tip: Praise a co-worker

The Chief Happiness Officer's monday tipsFor my very first monday tip, I’ll start with something really, really simple but extremely powerful: Praise.

Your monday mission: Praise someone.

Pick a co-worker and give that person positive feedback. It can be on something he or she has done recently (“I really enjoyed your idea about developing the Hansen account”) or on what you generally appreciate about that person (“I really like the way you always add great ideas to our project meetings”).

Don’t make a big production out of it, just go up to a colleague, deliver your praise and then get back to work. Do not hang around waiting to be praised back :o) Also do not add a “…but you really need to improve your…” after the praise :o)

Remember that whatever praise you choose to give has to be genuine. You can’t praise just to praise, so think about something you truly appreciate about that person.

For extra bonus points:

  • Praise someone you don’t talk to often. It’s a great way to establish contact.
  • Praise your manager. Managers often hear very little praise from their employees. But: Don’t kiss butt – only genuine praise counts.
  • If you really want a challenge, praise someone you don’t like much or someone you’re currently having a conflict with. It can be a great way to get un-stuck. Can’t think of anything positive about that person? Try again – there’s always something.

The Chief Happiness Officer’s monday tips are simple, easy, fun things you can do to make yourself and others happy at work and get the work-week off to a great start. Something everyone can do in five minutes, tops. When you try it, write a comment here to tell me how it went.

7 thoughts on “Monday tip: Praise a co-worker”

  1. Today I praised a co-worker from the political team for her memorandums – I know she puts a lot of work into them and I just wanted to let her know that her writing style puts even complex stuff into my range of understanding.
    She was very surprised and very pleased.

    Tomorrow I have a meeting with a co-worker that I actively dislike – I’ll try to praise him too, it wasn’t so hard after all.

  2. I try to praise a friend every monday and to be honest, I just receive a great praise from a guy and it’s clear that to be praised is a very good boost! We had lot of stormy discussion together in the past and it’s even better to hear this praise from him!

  3. We’ve got a temporary worker (former intern) that goofed up last week so people were kind of getting on his case. I could see that he was loosing pleasure in his work and making more mistakes because he wasn’t feeling well. Last monday at our weekly meeting I decided to give him a compliment that I had saved for such an occasion.

    I told him about an event that happened a few weeks ago. One of the departments that he dealt with had asked me how it was that he still worked here. I told them we had hired him to cover the holiday season to which the department said they were glad he was still there because he was always so helpful and fun to be around.

    When I told the temp this, he was really surprised and happy. He started with a positive note and hasn’t goofed up all week :-)

  4. What a nice thing to do for a co-worker Yvette, and what agreat way to do it. Way to go!

    And it’s nice to know that it made a difference. I’ve always felt that a fault-finding culture just makes people more likely to goof up.

  5. Hello, Alexander. This was an excellent post and reflects my own training about the topic. (Well, it would be good if it didn’t reflect my training, but the fact that it does makes it spectacular! :-)

    I especially mention, as you did, praising someone who you don’t care for much, and praising a supervisor or manager. As I mention–and those in my audiences know I speak from experience–it really IS lonely at the top! Those ideas are the two that many people contact me about later and say it was good feeling for them AND the other person.

    I’ll look around your site and put it on a feed so I can be reminded to check in often. It seems to be very, very effective material. Best wishes! Tina Lewis Rowe

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