Last week I blogged about the importance of taking time to celebrate successes. In our busy world, we tend to move quickly from one thing to the next. Just like celebration, it’s important to take the time to say thank you.
When you send a personal thank you note, the recipient is often so touched by the gesture that he or she will save that note for years. To you it may be a simple gesture, but to them, it can mean the world.
Although sending thank you notes is a common practice among leaders, it’s a great idea to encourage such recognition between peers as well. When peers form the habit of thanking and recognizing co-workers they are contributing to a positive and healthy culture.
I’m not a big fan of prescribing a specific number of notes per leader per week. It doesn’t take long for word to get out that leaders are being held to a certain number. It can send the message that leaders are only sending them to meet a quota. This message causes the effort to lose credibility. Instead, I recommend having a supply of notes on hand at all times and getting in the habit of seizing opportunities as they present themselves.
On rounds, take the opportunity to thank associates in person. But don’t hesitate to follow up with a short handwritten note as well. The secret to credible and meaningful thank you notes and other forms of recognition is to make them prompt, personal and plentiful.
Who can you thank today?