How Praising Employees Can Help Your Business Thrive Five appreciation opportunities you can adopt today.

By Gwen Moran

entrepreneur daily

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

It's no secret that employee praise -- ranging from a pat on the back to major public kudos -- is a good thing. But many managers struggle with this soft skill or don't give it enough credence, says Bill Flint, founder of Flint Strategic Partners, a management consulting firm in Goshen, Ind.

"Too often, leaders get caught up in telling people what they're doing wrong instead of showing that they care," he says. To reap the rewards of a kind word or two, here are five ways to easily incorporate performance-boosting praise into your organization.

Related: Motivating Employees to Work As Hard As You

1. Stop and talk to employees. As you walk through your office, take time to stop and talk to employees, thanking them for their hard work. It sounds simple, says Flint, but that kind of unexpected praise can put pep in the step of most employees.

2. Pinpoint praise-worthy acts. Encourage managers and employees to point out team members and co-workers who are working hard on a project or going above and beyond their job descriptions. Then, write a note or make a point to personally thank that person right away.

Be specific, says Flint. Praise the behavior you want to foster, such as, "I was so impressed by the way you organized that meeting agenda and accomplished everything in less than an hour. I appreciate that kind of efficiency."

Related: Jack Welch on How to Manage Employees

3. Reward good ideas. Employees who find ways to save money or improve operations are valuable assets and need to be recognized. If someone in your organization makes an improvement, make a big deal about it. Thank the person publicly. Depending on the idea and situation, an email blast might be appropriate in addition to the one-on-one appreciation, and let other employees know that type of innovation is valued.

4. Don't forget to praise productive failure. Sometimes, hard-fought battles don't work out as planned, but still deserve praise. If team members have given their all to a project that didn't succeed or a sale that was lost to a competitor, it's important to recognize those efforts.

"They probably feel defeated. It's your job, as the company owner, to tell them that their work is appreciated and help get their heads back into the game," Flint says.

5. Recognize milestones. When an employee hits the five- or 10-year mark with your company, do something. Keeping good employees is critical for any business to succeed. Thank the employee and incorporate a small gift or incentive to show you appreciate his or her loyalty.

Gwen Moran

Writer and Author, Specializing in Business and Finance

GWEN MORAN is a freelance writer and co-author of The Complete Idiot's Guide to Business Plans (Alpha, 2010).

Want to be an Entrepreneur Leadership Network contributor? Apply now to join.

Editor's Pick

Related Topics

Science & Technology

These Are the Top 6 AI Threats to Your Business Right Now

The modern workforce is forever changed by artificial intelligence. If you fail to understand that we will all need to learn AI to some degree, you haven't been paying attention.

Business Ideas

55 Small Business Ideas to Start in 2024

We put together a list of the best, most profitable small business ideas for entrepreneurs to pursue in 2024.

Business News

Here Are 3 Strategies Startup Founders Can Use to Approach High-Impact Disputes

The $7 billion "buy now, pay later" startup Klarna recently faced a public board spat. Here are three strategies to approach conflict within a business.

Business News

'This Can't Be True': Google Responds to Viral Hoax Claiming the Company Is Shutting Down Gmail

The fake news release started making its way around X on Thursday.

Business News

I Tested the 'Invest As You Shop' App to See If It Really Makes Investing Less Intimidating

Grifin is an app that tailors a user's investments to their spending habits. Now, the app is getting even more personal.

Business News

Vice Will No Longer Publish Content on Its Website, Lays Off Hundreds of Staffers

Vice Media CEO Bruce Dixon announced the news in an internal memo to employees on Thursday.