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Could Gratitude be the Key to Success?

Could Gratitude be the Key to Success?

In 2013 Glassdoor published data in their Employee Appreciation Survey that was extremely compelling. The power of substantive employee appreciation seemed to clearly develop positive ties between employers and employees in a way that not only impacted personal productivity but business goals as well.

Consider these results from the survey:

53% of respondents said they would stay at a company longer if only they felt more appreciation from their boss. (Glassdoor)

Over 80% said they would work harder when their boss or supervisor showed appreciation for them and their work. (Glassdoor)

If You’re An Employer or Supervisor Looking To Keep Great Employees Consider These Thoughts:

1. Not all recognition needs to be verbal. 

People do indicate that they appreciate the positive feedback about their work.  Consider sending an email to show appreciation.  Consider a small token of a gift to thank them for their hard work and dedication to the team.  Send candy or a $5 gift card to Amazon. Literally, anything can help send the message. Remember that there are other ways to extend this gratefulness like:

  1. Company-wide recognition (use this strategically.  Not everyone like this kind of mass attention)
  2. Shortened work hours to go home early if they choose
  3. Free lunch on the company
  4. An additional day off, just because
  5. A bouquet of flowers on Mother’s Day
  6. gift card and handwritten card on their birthday.

2. This is Not A Catch-All – But It’s a Start

If you typically don’t do anything to recognize or clearly show you are grateful for your employees, trying out some of the strategies above will certainly get noticed.  The upside,  your team will come to expect (and appreciate the positive reinforcement). The downside? (It’s not really a downside) Employees will come to appreciate, expect and emulate the gratitude.  This means you’ll most likely need to be mindful of how you show appreciation moving forward.

Are You An Employee? Consider these tips:

It may be safe to say that most supervisors truly want their teams to succeed and inherently know that the people on their teams can be motivated in many ways.  If you have a supervisor or manager, here are some ways to interact with them in with a spirit of practical gratitude.

1. Explore Ways To Genuinely Express Gratitude

If you watch Chevy Chase’s holiday movie, Family Vacation, you can probably recall the scene where Clark brings a gift into his boss’s office and has to place the present next to several dozen similar gifts, going completely unnoticed.  This spoofs the idea of buying positive attention from your boss. There are other ways to approach this.  Consider going in as a team to buy a holiday gift for your collective supervisor instead. Consider a well-written (and hand-written) thank you card. Something simple like this can have a huge impact.

2. Gratitude Doesn’t Say “Thank You” For a Paycheck – It’s Expressed on a Human Level

While your paycheck is the exchange for the work you do, gratitude can be expressed for the effort a manager puts into making sure the work experience is organized and positive. Leadership is lonely.  Managers and supervisors, regularly express their own feelings about leading teams and how challenging it can be to lead well and connect with the team on the right level too.  There’s a great quote that may help reframe how you see your boss and your teammates.

“If you want to lift yourself up, lift up someone else.” – Booker T. Washington

3. Gratitude is a Compounding Action

When you express gratitude toward others, it begins to impact your own perspective.  Not only does it have the power to make others feel “good,” but it is a delivery method for fuel for your own personal “success engine.” This positive flow of energy has the ability to impact other relationships, your work ethic and other aspects of your life.  Research continues to make connections between gratitude and self-esteem, sleep quality and resilience. Harvard Medical School even conducted studies showcasing the benefits of simply writing things you are thankful for on a regular basis. Yep, gratitude through simple writing exercises impacted relationships, mental status and overall health.

Is Gratitude the Key to Happiness and Success?

While there are so many factors that impact happiness and success, gratitude may be the one key that we have much control over.  Whether we’re focused on our family, our career, our team or business, it is clear that gratitude and thankfulness can have a seriously positive impact.

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