Encouragement--Heart At Work

Encouragement can have a very powerful effect on bosses and co-workers. The literal meaning of the word, encourage, is to put heart into. When this definition is applied to work situations, it suggests:

  • Stirring, inspiring and motivating bosses and co-workers with hope, courage and confidence.
  • Giving team members a vote of confidence.
  • Boosting morale by expressing approval and offering support to others in the office.
  • Lifting people up and moving them to do the things they need to do to achieve company and career objectives.
  • Empowering direct reports and peers to grow professionally and reach their full potential.
  • Stimulating cooperation and collaboration between work units, departments or the company as a whole.

Encouragement & Failure

Everyone needs encouragement. Bosses and co-workers alike face difficult situations and make mistakes or fail on a daily basis. They need help to cope with disappointment, fear, doubt and uncertainty. It has been said, "A word of encouragement during a failure is worth more than an hour of praise after success" (Anonymous).

Even if people act tough-as if they are successfully handling the overwhelming emotions that accompany a mistake, don't believe it! Somewhere deep inside, they are awash in despair with intense feelings of fear about having made yet another blunder or slip-up.

What they desperately need is someone like you to come alongside them and encourage them for trying even in the face of failure?someone who really cares about them?who accepts and acknowledges them by helping to keep their self-esteem intact in spite of the failure.

Put Heart into Others at Work

Encouragement is one of the easiest yet greatest work tools available to boost a boss or co-worker's self-esteem. When we put heart into others at work, we lead them to achieve greater things than they ever thought possible. Here are 10 tips to help you be an On-the-Job Encourager:

  • Show others at work that you care! Exert a positive influence on their work lives by giving them encouragement just because?
  • Deliberately look for small ways to encourage others verbally, in writing or through your own behavior towards them.
  • Act as a cheerleader or a fan club member for a co-worker or boss. Tell them, "I know you can do this?"
  • Reassure team members after a disappointment or setback.
  • Prompt your direct reports and peers to try new things or pursue new opportunities.
  • Offer to help co-workers recover from a disappointment or failure. Give them a shoulder to cry upon when appropriate.
  • Value and accept your co-workers as they are and don't put conditions on accepting them.
  • Help others in the office to believe in themselves. Point out their positive character traits and how these can lead to success in the future.
  • Recognize the efforts and improvements co-workers make especially after a mistake.
  • Show appreciation for the contributions of every team member in your office.
  • Select someone you can put heart into at work today! Make an effort to be an On-the-Job Encourager!

    Althea DeBrule, entrepreneur and seasoned human resources executive, has focused for more than 30 years on helping people achieve their career goals. Creator of The Extreme-Career-Makeover? and a founding partner of RADSGroup Organizational Consultants, she is recognized for her bottom line and practical application of career development and management strategies in a way that penetrates hearts and compels action. She speaks and teaches with inspired talent, humor and contagious zeal at management conferences and leadership retreats nationwide, and has been featured in CFO Magazine, Strategy@Work, Human Resource Executive Magazine. Althea is the author of Bosses & Orchards, a compelling and candid book about how to make your work relationship with your boss succeed. To discover how you can take your career to a new level, visit www.extreme-career-makeover.com/">http://www.extreme-career-makeover.com/

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