Have you ever taken time to think about thanking your workmates? Co-workers can make or break what your experience at a job is like.
Good co-workers can make routine job frustrations bearable, and bad co-workers can turn even a much-loved job into a nightmare.
When you work with people who make your job easier or are simply a joy to spend most of your days and weeks with, it’s worth talking the time to thank them! Never take those workplace moments for granted.
Reinforcing positive actions
For one thing, when you express appreciation to people, you’re reinforcing their actions and making it more likely that you’ll see more of the same in the future.
For another, by being vocal about your thanks, you’re being a good co-worker yourself, because most people want to feel valued and appreciated at work.
Plus, showing gratitude will probably strengthen those work relationships even further, or can even rebuild one that has been showing strain.
People tend to feel kindly toward people who make a point of recognizing their work, and it’s a lot tougher to be annoyed by someone who recently directed warm praise your way.
Vocal appreciation can be a key part of building and maintaining relationships that not only make your life at work more pleasant, but also be of help to you down the road with things like networking, wonderful job leads and references.
So with this bit of understanding why not take the time to thank co-workers who have made your work life easier or more enjoyable?
Here are three simple tips to appreciate your co-workers and one thing you need to know is that this simple but powerful act will always boomerang back to you.
1. Send a thank-you note
With technology all around us, handwritten thank-you notes have become so rare these days that sending one can make a real impression.
With a co-worker, you don’t need to put it in the mail, but a thoughtful handwritten note popped in someone’s in-box or left on their chair can have a big impact. It expresses thoughtfulness.
Many people appreciate notes like this so much that they keep them for years. I still have notes I received years ago that make me glow every time I look at them. Some are from my former colleagues.
Well, the handwritten thank you note might not be your preference, this does not leave you out. You can still use email to say the same thing. It might not have quite the same oomph, but if you take the time to write out in detail what you appreciate your colleague for (as opposed to just a quick “thanks for your help with project xyz!”), it may be just as treasured.
2. Talk to your coworker face-to-face
Again here, specificity is key. Don’t stop at something like “thanks for staying late to help me last week.”
Talk in detail about what you appreciated and why. For example: “I really appreciate how much effort you put into helping me work through the new office launch evnt. You asked such good questions, and hearing about your experience planning events in the past made me realize I can be approaching our vendors much more effectively on this one. I feel like the plan is on track now, and a lot of stickiest problems have been solved, and I’m really grateful for your help.”
Including real detail about what you appreciated and why makes your gratitude more meaningful, and it’s likely to stay with the person longer.
3. Email your co-worker’s manager
Have you ever received positive feedback from a client or your co-worker and thought to yourself ” I wish my boss could hear or read this”, then you know why this one is important.
Letting a co-worker’s manager know that she has done great work – either on a specific project or, more broadly, about how strong her work is in general – can be hugely helpful for that person.
Managers often take this kind of feedback into account when writing performance evaluations and contemplating raises, and it can also contribute to the overall sense the manager has of the person’s work.
Never forget to carbon copy or cc your colleague when you send this email, so that she’s able to see the praise herself
Purpose in your heart to express gratitude to your co-workers and you will be surprised at how the workplace will get warmer for all of you.