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Friday, November 26, 2010

Lean Quote: Thank You

On Fridays I will post a Lean related Quote. Throughout our lifetimes many people touch our lives and leave us with words of wisdom. These can both be a source of new learning and also a point to pause and reflect upon lessons we have learned. Within Lean active learning is an important aspect on this journey because without learning we can not improve.

"Remember to say thank you." — Barbara Gray

Thank you may be among the first words our parents teach us, but as we get older we seem to forget how to say them. Many managers usually recognize the major achievements--they celebrate the completion of a successful project, they honor an employee of the month. But how often do managers recognize the little steps their employees complete along the way?

Research has shown that recognition and appreciation is the top driver of employee engagement. 
Perhaps it seems elementary, but if you want employees who are fully engaged, you need to ensure they are recognized when they do great work and that they know you appreciate their contributions to the organization.
Employees need to be thanked…a lot. So says “guru of thank you” Bob Nelson, author of the bestselling 1001 Ways to Reward Employees—and he should know. Bob said, “The number one reason people leave their jobs today is that they don’t feel recognized for the job they’re doing.” We have all heard the adage “you get what you reward.” So if what you want is more outstanding work from an employee, say thank you the very next time that employee performs an iota of outstanding work.

The best recognition is thoughtful, happens daily, and has a personal touch. Even better, it's usually free.  Demonstrate appreciation!  Write a note, take them to lunch, acknowledge the work in a staff meeting…whatever seems right.  Just remember to say thank you.

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  1. Tim,

    Saying Thank you is easy but often overlooked. Thanks for sharing.


  2. Tim -

    Great post. I am for recognizing the work of others. The conflict I have in my company is I believe it should be a verbal Thank You and nice work. Whereas, others believe it should be monetary, like a gift card. They keep doing it and now employees are wanting a gift card for every little thing they do.

    I believe a simple Thank You can go a long way and accomplish more engagement than monetary rewards.

  3. Matt, I have learned as you probably already know that money is poor motivator but an excellent demotivator. I agree with you the Thank you needs to be personal. But that replace rewarding people individually or collectively for a job well done. Employees need to be like shareholders in a business.