Gratitude is one of the characteristics of Kindness I described in my book The Profit of Kindness. As Robert Emmons, professor of psychology, at UC Davis said: Gratitude improves emotional and physical health, and it can strengthen relationships and communities.
Today we are facing one of the greatest resignation wave we have ever had. According to the U.S Department of Labor, the number one reason people leave their jobs is that “they do not feel appreciated”. In fact, eavesdrop on someone’s happy hour, and most of the time venting among department members focuses on how little management knows them, understands them, or acknowledges them. Most of the time, “happy” hours are not focused on the monetary compensation, people are talking about their relationships with others: “He never greets me,” “She talks to me like I’m an idiot,” “They bring me down,” “he never smiles.” People feel overlooked, unappreciated, unvalued, and they are tired of it. Ultimately, they want to work less, give the minimum, and fail to go along to get along.
In the Book How Full is Your Bucket?, authors Tom Rath and Donald O. Clifton, Ph.D., estimated that there are more than 22 million workers in the United States alone who are “actively disengaged” or extremely negative. “This rampant negativity is not only disheartening, but it’s also expensive: It costs the U.S. economy between $250 and $300 billion in lost productivity alone. When you add workplace injury, illness, turnover, absences, and fraud, costs could surpass $1 trillion per year. These costs are not specific to the United States; they exist to varying degrees in every country, industry, and organization we have studied.”
In order to succeed in business, we must show employees, customers, clients, and colleagues that they are appreciated, that their work means something to us, that their patronage and loyalty are the reason for our success — and we know it! Doing this is the equivalent of what is popularly known as “bucket filling.”
Known as the grandfather of positive psychology, Clifton taught that spreading positive emotions relied on focusing not on what is wrong, but on what is right, and we can do the same in our business ventures. Instead of being hyperaware of who screwed up, how little we have, or what we lost in a day, we need to ask, “What is right with our people, our mission, our culture? What is right about our intention, our service, our product, our last week?” When we do that, we find opportunities to notice positive things and in turn let others know how grateful we are. We fill up bucket after bucket until a brigade of good business relationships forms.
One of the benefits of showing gratitude, as touted by an article on feelhappiness.com titled “Gratitude and Paying it Forward,” is that it usually inspires the recipient to show gratitude to someone else, and in a company or small business, this can lead to something called upstream reciprocity, which strengthens the culture of the business and affects customers and clients. Upstream reciprocity is the propensity of those who have been helped by others to pay it forward by assisting another person who needs help. “Therefore, an individual with a high propensity towards gratitude is likely to act in a similarly helpful way both to their benefactors AND to others,” the article said. So, is it really that easy to keep people happy by showing a little tenderness, saying a heartfelt thank you, giving a pat on the back, or even shooting off a quick email? You bet it is!
Jill Lublin — Short Bio `
Jill Lublin is an international speaker on the topics of Publicity, Networking, Kindness, and Referrals. She is the author of 4 Best Selling books including Get Noticed…Get Referrals (McGraw Hill) and co-author of Guerrilla Publicity and Networking Magic. Her latest book, Profit of Kindness went #1 in four categories. Jill is a master strategist on how to position your business for more profitability and more visibility in the marketplace. She is CEO of a strategic consulting firm and has over 25 years of experience working with over 100,000 people plus national and international media. Jill teaches a virtual Publicity Crash Course, and consults and speaks all over the world. She has spoken on many stages with luminaries such as Tony Robbins. Jill also leads an intentional kindness community. Visit publicitycrashcourse.com/freegift and jilllublin.com