What better time than the 4th of July to show employees gratitude for their hard work and commitment to your business?
It’s the anniversary of our nation’s independence and we usually celebrate with friends and family. Why not with our work families too?
Showing Gratitude Pays Off
Science tells us that expressing gratitude at work helps your bottom line, but sometimes we don’t take time to show appreciation. As Jeremy Adam Smith, author and producer/editor of the University of California, Berkeley’s website, the Greater Good Science Center (GGSC), writes:
“Americans are less likely to say “thanks” on the job than anywhere else, which hurts productivity and happiness. That needs to change.”
The 4th of July is a perfect time to throw a party—whether it’s a gala off-site picnic or a simple luncheon at the office—and share some heartfelt words of gratitude.
Throw a Party
It doesn’t have to be expensive or complicated. Real Simple and Party 411 have tons of great ideas for menus, decorations, and games and activities. Microsoft even has a free template for 4th of July invitations you still have time to print at your office.
And there are plenty of inspiring 4th of July quotes you can use to start off your remarks sharing your gratitude with employees. That personal touch makes the occasion more meaningful and sets the tone for others. The more they see and hear you express gratitude, the more likely they are to do so themselves.
Say Thank You
“America…it is the only place where miracles not only happen, but where they happen all the time.”
Follow that with “That’s how I feel about the work you do here at XYZ Company ….”
As Smith writes in his article, “Five Ways to Cultivate Gratitude at Work”:
“We don’t just work for money. We also work for respect, for a sense of accomplishment, for a feeling of purpose. We invest our selves and our emotions into our jobs, and work affects our emotional states.”
Gratitude is a non-monetary way to foster those motivations.
“‘Thank you’ doesn’t cost a dime, and it has measurably beneficial effects,” Smith writes.
Studies his organization conducted back that up. A study by Adam Grant, Wharton School professor of management, and Francesca Gino, Harvard Business School associate professor, found that a thank you from a supervisor gave people a strong sense of both self-worth and self-efficacy, and made people more trusting and likely to help one another.
GGSC Science Director Emiliana Simon-Thomas found that after two weeks of regular gratitude experiences, people felt happier and more satisfied with life, more resilient to stress, and reported fewer headaches and illnesses.
Here are Smith’s five tips for expressing gratitude to employees this 4th of July and everyday:
- Start at the top:
It’s up to the people with power to clearly, consistently, and authentically say “thank you” in both public and private settings.
- Thank the people who never get thanked:
Every organization has high-profile individuals. Remember to thank those who cut the checks, submit the invoices, and mop the floors.
- Aim for quality, not quantity:
When you’re specific about the benefits of a person, action, or thing, it increases your own appreciation—and it tells a person that you’re paying attention.
- Create many opportunities for gratitude:
Not everyone likes to be thanked—or likes to say thank you—in public. Provide other ways to do so, such as a web page or bulletin board where people can post thanks to others.
- In the wake of crisis, take time for thanksgiving:
Cultivating a culture of gratitude builds up a sort of psychological immune system that can cushion us when we fall,” writes psychologist Robert Emmons. “There is scientific evidence that grateful people are more resilient to stress, whether minor everyday hassles or major personal upheavals.”
So, happy 4th of July—remember to share and show your gratitude to family, friends and workplace colleagues!
For more on fostering a culture of gratitude in your workplace, download our FREE Guide to Workplace Gratitude.
Click the image below and start sharing your gratitude today!
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