“Everyone like a pat on the back” – the good old saying is known and realized by all. It is even more important in the modern era where social aspect are more conducive in life. However, appreciations can get complex and may go in different direction if not done right. So, here is my SMART appreciation tips;
S for Specific – Though it has some value when someone say “thank you for everything you did” or “appreciate your contribution”, it makes more effective when the receiver know what this “everything’’ or “contribution” was. The appreciations as to be specific and contextual to make it more effective. We should not let the receiver wonder why we thanked him or said those good words.
M for Meaningful – Do something meaningful, emotionally connected and make it feel like they say “came from the heart”. Also personalize it to the extent possible. What one person see meaningful and emotionally connected, may not be the same with other person. So, do it in the way that is meaningful to the receiver first and then the audience and lastly the giver.
A for Appropriate- Do it as and how much as required, but don’t overdo. Do it just enough that the ‘value’ of appreciation is always high, it is looked forward and it act as a motivator to do more and better. Also, maintain a parity between different situations and team members to ensure equal and balanced treatment.
R for Record – It is always good to make a record of appreciations. Especially of those special ones. It will be nice to call it back sometime later. The certificate, mementos, even clicking a picture would do the job. Also, doing formal communication through email or any systems that your organization may have for recording and broadcasting the event.
T for Timely – Appreciations has to be timely. Don’t do it too early, neither make it late. This can be tricky for some cases. If we do it early and then the end result comes out as not something worth an appreciation, would lead to appreciation regrets. At the same time, when it is later than when the recipient was expecting it will be like a ‘cold’ one and that won’t give the expected outcome.
Though I might made it somewhat complex for some of you by this SMART model, I also believe a simple heartfelt smile or “Thank You” goes a long way as a very effective appreciation. I believe this is the same for both professional and personal roles in life. I believe I do it fairly good in my professional roles and personal roles in the society. But, not very good in my personal role in the family. I tend to take it granted as I let others in the family too take it granted from me. Hence, the appreciations for the family is always in the heart and actions of giving back, not so much in words. Not sure, if this is the right way, but that is how it has been and I hope my family understand it.
How do you do on appreciations? Anything special and different that you follow? How different it is for you between your different roles in life? Eager to hear from you.