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The Art of the Science Behind qChange Series: Gratitude P2

Updated: Dec 4, 2021

For reference, in previous weeks we focused on utilizing Nudge Theory to prompt positive behavior from leaders right before critical meetings. Then we walked through how we use Neuro-Linguistic Programming to talk to leaders in a style that resonates with them. In the last two weeks we spent time on Self Determination Theory (SDT) and our core needs that move us towards growth, and finally the critical need for leaders to be more Self Aware.

Back when I worked for Kenexa and IBM, I consulted to some of the best organizations in the world. I’d often have the privilege of working with the C-suites and HR departments in those organizations on how to build better cultures, better leaders, and more engagement. Continually, the importance of gratitude was discussed as gratitude often was found to be one of the key factors related to engagement and a better employee experience. In those discussions, when the organization would talk through how to improve the issue, grand, elaborate, fancy actions and programs were discussed. While some of these can be great, simply saying thank you, in an authentic manner, goes a long way.

James, our CEO, recently sent me a fantastic McKinsey article focused on The Boss Factor with a lot to unpack. In the article, the authors Tera Alllas and Bill Schaninger stated the following:

Being thanked makes people feel valued. Celebrating small achievements helps people face larger challenges. As outlined in Teresa Amabile’s book The Progress Principle: Using Small Wins to Ignite Joy, Engagement, and Creativity at Work (Harvard Business Review Press, 2011), the experience of celebrating small accomplishments sets up a positive dynamic where everyone wants to do better. Routinely, frequently, and generously thanking team members costs nothing and has enormous benefits.

How valued is a simple, sincere thank you? Deloitte released a 2019 study with a great title: The Practical Magic of ‘Thank You’ where they surveyed 16,000 professionals about their preferred method of recognition for day-to-day accomplishments. A whopping 85% preferred a thank you over celebrations or gifts. Of the 85%, 54% preferred verbal and 31% written. Interestingly, women preferred written (36%) more than men (28%).

At qChange gratitude is a major focus area for us in our LX solution. In addition to giving leaders the means to recognize and provide gratitude to others for helping with their leadership journey, leaders can focus on important gratitude developmental areas such as Being Authentic, Giving Praise & Recognition, and Engaging & Inspiring Others.

John Howes, Ph.D.

Chief Experience Management Officer

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