Accounting for Gratitude at Work
Thanksgiving has come and gone, and I sincerely hope you all took advantage of that special time to take a break from your busy lives, gather with loved ones, and remember to be grateful for all that you have. Too often though, we think about gratitude only in terms of our personal lives. Thoughts of gratitude invoke images of the Thanksgiving table filled with delicious food and sweet pies, surrounded by those we love most. And there’s no denying how important it is to remember to be grateful for our health, our family and friends, the home we live in, and the food we eat, but as leaders, we shouldn’t stop there.
Gratitude in the workplace is equally as important as at home, with long-lasting beneficial effects not only on you, but on those with whom you work. So, the question is—Are you accounting for gratitude in the workplace?
The Benefits of Gratitude at Work
Emotional intelligence, empathy, mental health, and gratitude have never been as important as they are right now. We have undergone a psychological and organizational shift through the pandemic. Now, more than ever, employees want to feel valued, appreciated, and empowered. Long gone are the days of clocking in and out for a paycheck. Rather, employees have a higher psychological need to feel a sense of meaning at work.
Gratitude, which can be closely aligned with recognition, goes a long way in finding value and meaning in the workplace. And the benefits include far more than putting a smile on someone’s face. Gratitude not only increases well-being in ourselves and others, but also morale, energy, and engagement, positively affecting performance and retention. In fact, in the Global Happiness and Well-Being Policy Report, the Global Happiness Council estimated that “a meaningful increase in well-being” yields, on average, about a 10% increase in productivity.
Tips for Gratitude in the Workplace
Below are a few simple tips to remember at work:
- Be authentic. Authenticity creates the human connection so many long for now. If you are not authentic, the other person will quickly pick up on the insincerity, and your efforts will backfire.
- Remember the power of simply saying, “Thank you.”
- Don’t just recognize the big wins. Remember to recognize even the smaller, day-to-day ones.
- Recognize those on your team who regularly show gratitude.
- Incorporate gratitude into your culture not just around the holidays, but all year long.
With gratitude, not only do we feel better about ourselves, but we inspire others and help elevate them to be the best version of themselves. Lifting up your team members throughout the year will have long-lasting positive effects in your workplace. Then, you can be grateful for even more as you watch the successes unfold.
My hope is that each person who reads this chooses gratitude each and every day. Particularly after this past year and a half, we have seen firsthand how delicate life is and how our personal and professional lives can be disrupted without notice or question. So, please remember to choose gratitude.
I am exceptionally grateful to my clients, referral partners, friends, and family, all of whom help contribute to my ongoing journey.