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Is saying thank you that important for leaders?

It’s simple, but more powerful than you might realize. The words “Thank You” are two words that some leaders neglect to say enough. Have you ever had the unfortunate experience of doing something and not being thanked? How does it feel?  Thankyou

Why do I say these two words are powerful? Because by neglecting to say thank you; you lose some respect. People will view you differently as a leader. You might even possibly lose the opportunity for someone to do something nice for you again. I would encourage all leaders to express gratitude often towards those they lead. Be genuine, specific and timely in your gratitude and watch what a difference it makes.

Saying thank you can be as easy as verbally telling someone, writing a quick hand-written note and placing it on the keyboard of the person you are thanking before you leave for the night, making an unexpected phone call, sending a quick e-mail, giving a candy bar or single flower, baking some cookies or providing a favorite snack. There are a multitude of ways to say thank you, just do it. People like grateful leaders.

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{ 14 comments… add one }

  • michael cardus October 12, 2010, 6:36 am

    a rely of “You are welcome” is often one of those lost leadership terms. Now replaces with “no problem” “don’t worry about it” happy to do it”…are not the same.
    Taking the gratitude of a “Thank You” means that the person is thankful for your service and appreciates it.By saying “don’t worry” it lessens the thank you.

  • Doug Grahn October 12, 2010, 7:49 am

    It’s amazing how often those two simple words are forgotten these days Mike. I still hear my mother’s voice in my ear reminding me to thank people, and have never forgotten the importance of showing appreciation for things others do to benefit me, my family, or the companies I’ve worked for.

  • Lorraine Arams October 12, 2010, 9:52 am

    Yes! For both the leader and the people on her/his team! All people, including the leader, likes to receive appreciation. For the leader, it’s a way of paying attention to what’s going on. A habit of saying thank you is reminder that people doing the work are people, not machines, not robots. And . . . it’s the best way to connect – people feel a sense of connection because everyone is present – I would add “Please” to the mix – instead of “do this”, “would you please . . . . ” –

  • Michael Trouillon October 12, 2010, 9:54 am

    Mike: I made a presentation to 15 Scouting leaders two weeks ago on the subject of leadership. I used one of your blogs on the subject of smiling and saying thank you …Personally I think that it is absolutely essential conduct for a leader…but more has to be sincere and not forced.

  • Michelle M. Martin October 13, 2010, 6:47 pm

    Yes it is but not only thank you, “please” is another word I find is forgotten. It is amazing the reactions I get sometimes when I say either of these words. I remember when I first started here 10 years ago and I was heading out for the night, my managing partner at the time said “Thank you for your help.” It was a simple statement but realizing I didn’t remember that last time someone said that I walked out of here on air. It truely makes a difference and worth taking the time to remember to say it to someone.

  • Allan Harvey October 13, 2010, 6:55 pm

    Full marks Mike. Thank you! as we move away from 20th century command and control leadership styles especially in my part of the world in South Africa leaders will have little choice but to include these two words in their vocabulary if they are to get optimal performance from their crew. Of course thank you meets one of the most fundamental of all human needs, that of recognition. Thanks again.

  • Mike Rogers October 13, 2010, 7:08 pm

    I think you make an interesting point Michael. The words “Thank You” are the right words. Especially thank you’s that are specific, timely and genuine!

  • Ben Deceuster October 19, 2010, 9:01 pm

    So true and I would add the phrase “I appreciate…” as well. It is amazing how such short statements when expressed sincerely can build a relationship of trust and motivate employees. As stated in some of the prior comments, basic courtesies can go a long way in differentiating yourself as a true professional.

  • Atif Aijaz October 24, 2010, 12:02 am

    Saying thanks is absolutely necessary. This communicates that although certain thing are given and exopected from team members, leader has the graciousness and humility to thanks for even those.
    All this help connect and build deeper relationships, if done with geniune good intention.

  • Scentsy July 26, 2011, 12:11 am

    I believe you are only as good as your team, so showing a little gratitude is vital to any organization. I have hired someone specifically to help show my appreciation in the form of sending a simple “thank you” card or “way to go” card to those who have earned it. It’s amazing what a difference it makes. One of the best investments I have made in my business.

  • Francis Fernandes December 14, 2011, 2:37 am

    I feel when leaders say thank you, the team mates become humble and extremely happy. Their productivity & creativity will increase. They will give the best shot what ever task they will be doing. This is will delight the customers and bring in more business. I feel, this is one of the best way to encourage team mates.

  • Mike Rogers December 14, 2011, 1:28 pm

    Thanks Francis. I agree! So important to say thank you. I know I personally notice when I am thanked and when I am not. It is important to me.

  • sanjay rakecha December 12, 2012, 3:49 am

    It is absolutely essential conduct for a leader.Best way to encourage team at large.

  • Mike Rogers December 15, 2012, 12:33 pm

    True Sanjay. Thanks for the comments : )

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