Two Highly Effective Words for November…


Why is it “thank you” is hard to say? Those two words are highly underrated and practiced. I suggest they can work magic in the workplace.

When someone makes a suggestion, it’s easy to jump in and dispute or defend. A simple “thanks for that observation,” is often better. Or, just plain old “thank you.”

When you don’t know what to say, respond with “thanks.” You don’t have to agree with them, that’s not what saying thanks is about. You can simply agree to think about what they’ve said. Saying “thanks” is not capitulation or submission. It’s not even close to humiliation.

When you say “thank you” more often, there are big payoffs. People feel good because they feel appreciated. They feel as if they’re being listened to. (It’s even better when they actually are being heard!)You are letting them know their opinions, suggestions, ideas count.

I don’t know there’s any scientific proof of this, but I’d venture to say women say “thanks” more often than men. Maybe it’s because many of them raise children and teach them to be polite. Saying “thank you” is a fundamental lesson we teach kids.

Yet somehow, once when we’re in positions of authority, we lighten up on saying things like “thank you,” and “I’m sorry.” Do we assume that we might appear weak or ineffective?

I’m going to make a suggestion: let’s all reset our default responses for the month of November. Let’s make “thanks” and expressions of gratitude a habit.

This may be especially hard when someone gives you information you don’t like or agree with. You can thank them for speaking up, for caring enough to bear bad news, thank them for letting you know this.

You can still dispute and defend, but starting off with “thank you,” lets them know you’re listening and you’re considering their point of view.

What about you? Do you use this expression as frequently as you could?

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