Top 10 Fears Stopping Us From Recognizing Others

 

Many of us can get quite overwhelmed with having to recognize people. For some, it can seem almost fearful. Yet, as Steven Pressfield, in his book, The War of Art explains, “the more scared we are…the more sure we can be that we have to do it.” Which is why I examine closely the Top 10 Fears that hold us back from doing what we all must do…and that is giving others the recognition they deserve.

1. Fear of Rejection. What if you say the wrong things to someone? Maybe an expression of appreciation isn’t received well? No matter. None of the regular things you say on a daily basis are ever perfect soliloquies. Recognition is about others – so give it any way you can. Note that no one ever stops you from recognizing them.

2. Fear of Criticism. Never let any critic hold you back from the art and gift of recognizing others because this comes from inside of you. Let it out! Remember, wherever there are critics there are also encouragers in the wings. Don’t let others stop you from giving people what is rightfully theirs.

3. Fear of Incompetence. Too many people tell me that they don’t know how to give recognition to people, whether verbally or with the written word. The key is to realize recognition is about relationships and that it comes from the heart. Push this fear out of the way and sing people’s praises out loud.

4. Fear of Unprofessionalism. Saying thank you to people and communicating feelings to those who have made contributions is all about them. Recognition is not about professionalism. There are no standards or competency levels to be reached and maintained. You simply have to be yourself with others.

5. Fear of Expectation. There are no little angels from opposing camps on your shoulders telling you what to do or not do or how to share words of appreciation with those you work with. The only real expectation people have is to be respected and valued. Those values alone will let you speak the right words.

6. Fear of Perfectionism. Not one single employee has ever told me how perfect an acknowledgment they received was. The only condemnation heard, is when nothing is said at all. Nada. There is no “one way” to give praise or express appreciation. The perfect thing to actually do is to give freely.

7. Fear of Egocentricity. Oh yes, the fear of doing anything comes right from inside ourselves and limits us from the many pleasurable activities of life. Don’t get too caught up with yourself. Instead, think more about the person needing to be recognized. This is, after all, all about them and not you.

8. Fear of Others. But what will others think if I recognize one person and not the others? Honestly, I’ve heard this way too many times. Don’t ever let “others” both in reality or in your head, determine what you should say or do in any area of your life. Give recognition to one and all and have fun doing so.

9. Fear of Caring. Whoever said it is wrong to care about people at work? We can spend half, or more, of our waking hours at work. It is positive and needful to form caring relationships with others. Scrub this fear from your vocabulary. Instead, use it as a motivational force for caring gratitude.

10. Fear of Weakness. Talking about emotional, warm and fuzzy matters, can be seen by some (especially any macho stereotypic males) as a sign of weakness. The irony is, individuals who have mastered the art and practice of giving positive recognition the right way, are always viewed more positively by other people.

 

Previously published in Incentive Magazine.

Be Careful With The Compliments You Give People

A whole year has gone by and it’s March 1st again. I want to wish you a happy World Compliment Day.

Our friend, Hans Poortvliet, from the Netherlands, helped create this special day. He wanted to build awareness of the importance of complimenting people. That was 16 years ago when he started National Compliment Day. Now, the concept has spread so fast it has become an international event just a few years later.

A compliment, according to the Oxford Dictionary, is simply “a polite expression of praise or admiration.”

A compliment might also include a personal commendation, or even a formal act or demonstration of civility, respect, or regard for someone. (more…)

Do You Really Recognize Poor Performing Employees?

Whenever you are dealing with people in the workplace you will always need to address performance on the job.

There are 2 sides of the performance coin. It is either good performance or its poor performance.

With employee recognition, I often get asked questions about recognizing poor performers. Recently, I was asked, “How do you recognize a poor performing employee without encouraging mediocrity?”

You know they have someone in mind when they ask this question. Consider the following questions to help guide you on this subject. (more…)

Practice recognition giving on daily basis.

Strive to give recognition every day to help you gain confidence in this skill. Research shows managers who recognize regularly have higher results from their employees than those managers who are not consistent recognizers. Don’t worry if you stumble through your first few spontaneous recognition expressions. The important thing is, you tried your best, and the next time will be even better. Like anything in life, perfect practice always makes perfect.

How to Make Recognition Giving a Part of Your DNA

You and I need to learn how to truly value people and their contributions.

When we respect and acknowledge people properly for the effort they make, giving recognition demonstrates our respect for them and shows they are truly worthy of our time.

I have written before how giving recognition does not take very much time to do. Yet, it is the number one reason, or barrier, for why people don’t give recognition.

Making recognition a part of your DNA – means following a consistent, systematic approach to how, and when, you give people recognition.

(more…)

Recognition Tip #42: Take time to ask people for their recognition preferences.

Create an informal sit-down opportunity and learn about an individual’s goals and what motivates them at work. When the comfort level is present, ask them what they like and don’t like with the recognition they receive from you. Discover their preferred frequency of recognition and how they best like to be appreciated.

When Does A Person Deserve To Be Recognized?

Fotolia File: #87099239 | Author: Yury Zap

People ask this question of me in a variety of ways.

But the bottom line is, managers, want to know when they should recognize a person or not.

They’re looking for a magic formula that will make their job easier. They want me to provide them with some kind of tool or process to know how to judge whether an action or behavior performed by an employee merits being recognized or not.

The big flag in the title question is the word “deserve”.

How can you deal with this question? (more…)

How To Overcome the Biggest Excuse for Not Giving Recognition

How to overcome the biggest excuse for not giving recognition. There are lots of barriers to recognition. We'll discuss them and deal with that BIG one too.

Posted by Rideau, Inc. on Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Here’s my latest Facebook Live on How To Overcome the Biggest Excuse for Not Giving Recognition.

I address some of the common barriers that managers have with recognition. And then I challenge the most common reason given. Is it a valid reason or an escapist excuse? Find out in the broadcast.

 

Give The Best Recognition With These P.R.I.M.E. Factors

Each act or expression of recognition can be measured against five criteria, which I call Recognition P.R.I.M.E. Factors.

When you fully understand the importance of these factors you will wisely be able to use them and give more meaningful and memorable recognition.

I am not saying you MUST use all of these factors every time you give recognition. But each type of recognition you use will score differently on a polar spectrum – high or low for example – for each individual factor.

Let’s quickly review each of the PRIME Factors and see how they affect recognition and the impact they can have on people. (more…)

How To Say Thank You Like You Really Mean It

Ever receive a compliment from someone, or they say thank you to you, and you start questioning how sincere they really are with what they said?

While you might not be right all the time it seems science has picked up on this intuitive ability we have.

Karyn Fish, from McGill University, and her colleagues, outline in their “The sound of (in)sincerity” research, how we have a pretty good ear for identifying genuine praise and recognition. (more…)