How To Gain Greater Confidence With Giving Recognition

Nathaniel Branden, author of The Power of Self-Esteem, defined confidence as, “our ability to think and to cope with the basic challenges of life.” He said that “confidence is our right to be happy, the feeling of being worthy, deserving, entitled to assert our needs and wants and to enjoy the fruits of our efforts.”

Often a lack of confidence comes from low self-esteem, insecurity, and self-doubt.

In the work setting, a lack of confidence can affect us in many ways. And in recognizing employees, it can stop you in your tracks from not giving recognition to deserving colleagues and employees.

Let’s look at various ways to improve the level of confidence with giving effective and meaningful recognition.

Don’t Compare Yourself to Others

One area to be careful with is comparing yourself with others. It would be wrong for us to believe that everyone else we work with is far better at giving recognition than yourself.

In a 2018 study by Jennifer K. Vrabel, Virgil Zeigler, and Ashton C. Southard, in Personality and Individual Differences, they found that people who compare themselves to others tend to experience greater envy. The more envy people experienced, the worse they felt about themselves.

When you are prepared with the knowledge and skills for giving meaningful and effective recognition, there will be no need to compare yourself with others. The reason for this is that everyone will equally know how to give recognition.

Prepare Yourself to Give Great Recognition

Always remember to use the Two-Part Specificity Rule® when expressing recognition. This is where you first specifically describe the action of the individual you’re recognizing. In this way you can feel more confident by stating exactly what you observed, or what others shared with you.

The second part of the Two-Part Specificity Rule® is to specifically tell the individual you’re recognizing, exactly how their behaviors and positive actions impacted someone else. Share with them the difference their behaviors had on an employee, their manager, a customer or client, or towards the organization.

You’re not expected to memorize a complete sentence or script out your recognition. But hopefully this simple structure will give you the confidence boost you need for saying, or writing out, your recognition to someone who deserves it.

Visualize Yourself as an Excellent Recognizer

See yourself as being able to give great recognition to those whom you observe doing positive behaviors and achieving great results.

Use positive affirmations and repeat them out loud to give yourself a positive thought that you can give recognition well. Say or read thoughts like, 

  • “I am a great recognizer of my peers and those I work with.”
  • “It is an amazing feeling to appreciate people for who they are and recognize them for what they do.”
  • “I am glad I can make someone feel valued and appreciated.”

Inhale and breathe in deeply through the nose and do a complete exhalation through the mouth. Repeat this several times as you think on these positive affirmations. Get yourself physically into the right frame of mind to give amazing recognition.

Teach Someone Else to Give Recognition

Teachers of any subject always learn more than the student does just through the whole process of preparing what to teach and thinking about the subject.

Do some homework like reading previous posts on this blog. Use the search bar feature or look up articles under Recognition Practices. Select a topic that interests you and commit to teaching one of your peers about the principles and ideas I’ve written about.

Work with your “colleague-student” and commit to applying what you’ve learned on the job. Set a date when you both commit to putting your knowledge and skills into action. Report back to one another by text, phone call, or a quick meeting and discuss how each of you did. Share with each other how you felt in applying what you had learned. Describe the reaction of the recipients of recognition. This always boosts your recognition confidence

Sharing ideas and information about recognition giving with someone else will be a great way to strengthen your recognition confidence.

Recognition Reflection: How confident are you at giving amazing recognition that will resonate well with your employees?

Roy is no longer writing new content for this site (he has retired!), but you can subscribe to Engage2Excel’s blog as Engage2Excel will be taking Roy’s place writing about similar topics on employee recognition and retention, leadership and strategy.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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