The Value of Compliments in the Workplace

I was talking to a colleague one day and he tells me “You compliment too much!” .  I jokingly told him “by the way, your shirt looks great on you!” to which he smiles and says “thanks!”

While some people may view my compliments as something excessive, I really am sincere (except that conversation above) when I compliment the work of others. I think we live in a society that does not compliment enough.

Complimenting the efforts of others who I feel are worthy of recognition is very important to me and it has been  a life-long habit of mine. When I feel the person assisting me goes above and beyond what I think is beyond basic customer service, I take the time to thank them.

Many times, I receive  great customer service through the phone and it is these times when I compliment those who help me by thanking them and sharing my positive experience with their supervisors. I do the same at department stores,  restaurants or wherever I see good deeds .   by writing notes of appreciation either on my receipt or in back of my business card. If their supervisor is available, I offer my compliment to their supervisor in front of them. From the reactions of those I compliment, I know they sincerely appreciate the recognition and I also feel really good seeing the smiles on their faces.

As a leader of a team of developers and managers, I make the effort to recognize the positive acts of my teammates because I think it’s the right thing to do.  These compliments have come through the form of publicly sharing the actions of my teammates at a meeting, sending them thank you emails and copying my supervisors, and just verbally thanking them when I see them in the hallways. When I compliment, I do make the point of going beyond the “thank you” and actually describe what I’m complimenting on. These compliments go a long way towards making my teammates feeling valued and appreciated and have also contributed to a very pleasant workplace I think we all enjoy.  I am not a very competitive person and I value a harmonious workplace. I think having a culture that promotes compliments definitely adds to a workplace any employee would look forward to every day.

How is your workplace when it comes to offering compliments? How often do you offer/get compliments? What are other ways you/your workplace recognize the positive efforts of the employees?