During this time of year, people often reflect on the things that they are grateful for. Often, those “things” are material things or circumstances. This year, I practiced telling the people around me that I am grateful for them and why. I use this approach as a leader to express gratitude for my team members and decided to apply this to my personal life. My conclusion is that this attitude is beneficial in all areas of my life!
As an employee and team member, I have been in situations where I felt undervalued, underappreciated, and taken for granted. I believed that the leaders around me treated me like I was expendable and the employees as interchangeable. I vowed as a leader that I would never intentionally make my team feel that way. When I became a leader, I made sure that my team knew that I valued their skill set, experience, and expertise. I let them know that it mattered to me and the organization if they stayed or left and that I wanted them to continue to be a part of the team.
If you would like to take steps to show gratitude to those around you, try these strategies:
As a leader, I recognize that it is an honor and great responsibility to lead others. Without followers, there is no leader. I am thankful for all those, past and present, that have allowed me to lead them in any capacity. It is truly a pleasure!
There is a saying that being a leader is like being a man alone on an island. It is true that the higher up the career ladder you go, the fewer people there may be in your organization to collaborate with or to confide in. You may find that others do not understand your job responsibilities or that the people that you used to talk to are now your subordinates. Whatever the case, you may find yourself alone and desiring support. Some of the signs that you have created your own island are: