Encouragement is as simple as it sounds – imparting courage upon others. The more you can shine light on the unique abilities of others, bring life into conversation, and operate from a genuine place, the more positive a work environment you will find yourself.
Follow these five ways of encouraging others at work and you will find yourself becoming a catalyst of encouragement in your workplace.
In this episode
Courageous Self-Confidence – Give Sincere Compliments Often (previous episode)
“If I like anything, I am hearty in my approbation and lavish in my praise.” -Charles Schawb click to tweet
5 ways to encourage others at work
1) Give sincere compliments
The fastest way to build someone up is through sincere compliments. When you give a genuine compliment to someone, you speak life and affirmation into that individual. It builds confidence in one’s self. It can be a very powerful thing. The best type of compliment is one that is sincere. So compliment the things that YOU notice. Not the obvious.
Charles Schwab said “If I like anything, I am hearty in my approbation and lavish in my praise”. Dale Carnegie later coined the advice “be hearty in your approbation and lavish in your praise”, modeling the wise words of Charles Schwab.
Notice that Charles Schwab started out with “If I like anything …” not only is he saying that you should give a lot of compliments, but he is saying that they must be sincere, “If I LIKE anything …”
2) Leave a post-it-note or other token
Take your compliments and gratitude to the next level by giving a token of appreciation. You don’t need expensive or large tokens of appreciation to encourage someone else. Leaving a small post-it-note with some words of encouragement will do.
I did this for a colleague. Months later we became enemies at work. However the post-it-note remained. Tokens of appreciation carry a lot of weight. Especially physical ones.
3) Use positive words in unexpected places
Brighten up someone’s day with unexpected positive words. One of the most perfect places to infuse positive words is in long administrative phone conversations. Put your encouragement on autopilot by getting a hold of an encouraging phonetic alphabet. Instead of using words like Charlie and Frank, use words like Courage and Friendship. This has the added benefit of winning your cable representative over for a better deal too.
4) Talk behind someones back
Not in a bad way. Talk up a storm about how much you appreciate another person. Spread good news about something one of your colleagues has done. Be someone that is constantly praising others behind their backs. By doing so, you will shift the environment.
Also when you praise others behind their back and word gets back to them, they will begin doing the same for you. Everyone will know you as someone who speaks well of others and they will begin to do the same. Consider this the truest form of anti-gossip.
5) Ask for advice and respond in enthusiasm
Everyone is smarter, wiser, better than you at something. Humbling isn’t it. Because everyone is a master at something, there is plenty that you can learn from others. So ask for advice. Learn from your colleagues. It is an honor to be treated as an expert, especially when it’s not their job to give the advice you are asking for.
Listen to their responses with enthusiasm. Give them your full attention by hanging on every word and responding with “wow” and “yes”. This is very encouraging. But make sure to do this with a spirit of sincerity. Really be curious and make an effort to learn something.
Word of caution, if someone is repeating themselves, and you begin to find them boring because of it. STOP. Assess yourself and ask, am I really listening to what they are saying? People usually repeat themselves because they haven’t gotten proper feedback that their message was heard. Enthusiasm is the best response.
Want to be more encouraging on the phone?
I’m introducing to you a brand new resource. It’s a printable phonetic alphabet with encouraging words. This is a job aid that will not only make your communication over the phone more clear when spelling out names and user accounts, but it is also meant to encourage others.
Samuel Hatton is a multi-talented media creator and an encourager. His mission is to encourage others in who they truly are so that they can have greater capacity to live out their destiny. He does this by producing inspiring content as well as coaching people to take courageous action toward their passions and goals.
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