Feedback can be positive as well, of course. Why not train yourself to give and receive positive feedback? It is a quick and easy way to contribute to a positive work climate and be a positive agent.
That is if you are congruent and authentic. If you don’t mean it, don’t say it.
It may be easy to forget giving compliments because when things go well our brain accepts that as normal. Especially if we’re busy. Negative things stand out and you may be focusing on negative feedback.
Can you bring your positive to negative ratio to 3:1? Train yourself to notice and compliment on positive behaviors such as helping a coworker, sharing information, thinking ahead, taking action, trying and learning something, contributing to the purpose, pointing out something positive, and so on.
How would you feel if the response to your compliment was: “That’s part of my job, nothing special.”
Do you feel it? It is different when they say: “Thank you”.
If someone gives you a compliment, can you accept it? A genuine compliment is a gift. Don’t dismiss it with a diminishing remark like “Oh, I just recycled the old slides, no biggie”. Accept the present by saying: Thank you.
That is nicer for the compliment-giver and entices them to give you another compliment next time.
Is your inner critic too perfectionistic?
If you find it hard to accept compliments, check your self-talk and self-compassion. Is your inner critic too perfectionistic? This might be a reason. You may feel you are not good enough yet to receive that compliment. Or you feel shy. You don’t want to stand out. You don’t want to be seen as an overachiever. What does that tell you…?
It means you might have some “inner homework” left. The Ego comes up with fears and conditions. Try to let them go and accept the compliments that people give you. Don’t be too critical of yourself and others and give them back generously. Acknowledging what is positive and working well is proven to boost your happiness and your performance.
Complimenting others may be awkward when it’s not normal in the current culture at work. People might question your motives, dismiss your positive feedback, or worse, ridicule you. In cultures with a larger power distance, complimenting is reserved for the leaders and it is “not done” to give a compliment to a higher placed person.
My plea is to do it anyway. Yes, that takes courage. But a compliment will never cost you your job. It is worth doing if you want to help others see what is going well, what is positive, and what rocks!If someone gives you a compliment, can you accept it? Click To Tweet
If your culture is cynical about compliments, find one or preferably two other positive agents. Practice giving compliments together before you go out and give them “in the wild”.
This is book post #64 – Part “YOU”
By the way, if you want to contribute to a positive workplace culture, check out my next open workshop on Positive Culture Change Leadership in 2022! Registration is available at a first come first serve basis.
Or check out the online Positive Culture Academy. Let’s be Positive Agents who do revolution by evolution: one interaction at a time, one person at a time.
Leaders, employees, consultants, citizens – everyone can make a positive difference from any position, without needing permission or resources from others. Unstuck yourself and engage others via your interaction and actions. Transform into a positive organization where people and performance thrive.
I’m blogging my next book: “Positive Power at Work – How to make a positive difference from any position.” Your feedback is appreciated!