A Note of Appreciation - Sunday, September 27, 2015
We all want to feel appreciated—that our efforts are valued, that our contribution makes a difference. Hearing even a simple expression of gratitude can inspire us to do our best.
That’s what researchers at the London School of Economics found as they analyzed more than 50 studies that looked at what motivates employees in the workplace. Their conclusion? It’s not the paycheck. Along with the sense that our work is meaningful and interesting, the best motivation, they found, comes when someone appreciates what we’re doing.1 As one expert put it: “Your raise in pay feels like your just due, your bonus gets spent, your new title doesn’t sound so important once you have it. But the sense that other people appreciate what you do sticks with you.”2
So why do we sometimes not give others the appreciation they deserve? Some may feel it makes them appear less powerful, less in charge. Others might feel that it goes without saying—a job well done is expected, and thanks should be reserved for only the most exceptional cases. Some people express appreciation only if they think it will get them something in return. And then there are those who just don’t even think about it.
But there are also those who do think to say thank you. For example, recently a hard-working employee received a note of appreciation from his boss. It didn’t come at an annual review. It wasn’t a tactic to get the employee to work harder. It was unexpected, sincere, and timely. It came from a thoughtful leader who simply took a few moments to acknowledge someone’s dedicated efforts. That employee went back to work with a renewed desire to do even better.
Sincere appreciation is always appropriate, always needed, and always well worth the effort. Think how much you value the people in your life who express gratitude; they tend also to be optimistic—they are more apt to see the positive in people and situations. When offering appreciation becomes our way of life, it changes the way we see the world, and we come to notice the good things and good people around us.
-Lloyd D. Newell
1. See Janice Kaplan, “It Pays to Give Thanks at the Office,” Wall Street Journal, Aug. 8–9, 2015, C3, wsj.com/articles/it-pays-to-give-thanks-at-the-office-1438959788.
2. Adam Grant, in Kaplan, “It Pays to Give Thanks.”
Sept. 27, 2015
Broadcast Number 4,489
Mormon Tabernacle Choir
Canticle of Faithfulness
Daniel Bird; based on “Great Is Thy Faithfulness” by William M. Runyan
My Shepherd Will Supply My Need
American folk hymn; arr. Mack Wilberg
Prelude on “Pisgah”
For the Beauty of the Earth
Conrad Kocher; arr. Mack Wilberg
Old Time Religion
Spiritual; arr. Moses Hogan; adapted by Benjamin Harlan
M. Thomas Cousins