Celebrate success at work

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Celebrate success at work

  1. 1. Celebrate Success @ Work Smart managers realize the value of celebrating success to motivate employees. They typically take their team out for lunch or some other social event to celebrate the success of achieving a particularly difficult target where everyone has had to work extra hard. On a smaller scale, managers thank employees individually for putting in an extra effort or when they do something special. Another popular approach to employee recognition is to create an employee of the month program. The team member whose contribution during a particular month has been most valuable becomes employee of that month. These ways of motivating employees are dramatic and they can be powerful if used effectively, but there are smaller initiatives managers can take that can have a deeper, more lasting effect on employee motivation. In addition, it is possible that some employees might never become employee of the month, so how should a manager motivate them? Every time managers meet with their team members, whether individually or as a team, a simple technique to celebrate success is to ask what went well since the last meeting. Most managerial meetings focus on problems and issues and, as a result, the overall tone within the team can be rather negative. Employees come to meetings wondering what trouble they might be in this time and they prepare to defend themselves. Being in a defensive frame of mind, they may be economical with the truth and reluctant to convey bad news to their boss. Essential communication can be sacrificed as a result of this negative, fearful atmosphere. By asking what went well since the last meeting, before moving onto problems, employees are given a chance to talk about their everyday successes and achievements. Over time, they start to think about what achievements they will talk about in the next meeting. Then they think what else they can do that would make a good impact on their boss. As a result, they are not only getting some recognition for good work, they start feeling motivated to do even more, just to have something positive to say at the next meeting. In addition, spending time talking about positive things that have happened helps to change the tone of the meeting and the overall atmosphere in the team. There is now a better balance between positive and negative. This helps employees relax and feel more confident. They find it less stressful to admit mistakes because they know their boss recognizes and appreciates all the value they add. Team communication
  2. 2. becomes more open and honest as a result of creating such a positive atmosphere. When first starting to use this technique, it is important to persist and probe for even small examples of things that went well. The problem is that employees tend to take their achievements for granted. The aspects of their jobs they are very good at are generally easy for them to do as well, so they tend to dismiss them as not being worth mentioning. Not being aware of how valuable these contributions are, it is easy for them to focus too much on mistakes and, as a result, feel demotivated much of the time. Often managers won’t observe many of the good things employees do, so creating a routine discipline of always asking what went well provides the manager with essential data to use when it comes to performance appraisal time. But the real benefit of this way of celebrating success is that every team member gets some recognition and is better motivated as a result.

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