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The Power of a Compliment


For your employees, one of the best things about completing a long or taxing project is presenting it to you and getting your endorsement, along with a compliment for a job well done. Think about it: Everybody likes to be recognized for his or her efforts and to be told they did a nice job.

As much as everybody likes to hear a compliment, it’s something that often goes overlooked in the fast-paced what-have-you-done-for-me-lately workplace. However, a well-deserved and timely compliment can encourage an employee to do his or her best at all times.

With that in mind, listed below are some tips for complimenting your employees.

Be genuine. People will recognize an insincere compliment, so don’t say it unless you mean it. If it’s a halfhearted compliment, you’ll do more harm and lose more respect by saying it than by withholding it.

Be specific. Be sure to point out specific aspects of a job well done instead of just offering an overall, vague compliment. Provide feedback about what parts impressed you and acknowledge the effort that went into accomplishing the task.

Be accurate. If one person was responsible for a successful project, don’t give credit to others not involved in it. On the flip side, if it was a team effort and you name names, be prepared to include everyone. If you leave one team member out, they’ll remember it and resent it.

A specific, genuine, and accurate compliment will create loyalty from employees and instill in them a desire to work harder and maintain a high level of performance. Following these guidelines will also demonstrate that you are fair in your assessments. When you need to make a critique or issue criticism, it will be easier for employees to accept.

Steve Jones

General Manager and Vice-President of the CodecSys Division

Broadcast International

Salt Lake City


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