At Achilles Group, we use the label of “CPR” to remind us how vital it is for teams and organizations to Celebrate, Praise and Recognize people. As a leader in your organization, if you want to revive your culture, practice a little CPR:
Take time to appreciate the completion of a big project. Too often we focus on all that lies ahead and neglect to acknowledge what has been accomplished. Growing up, our Achilles Group managing member, Stan Spaulding, spent a lot of time on a tractor in a hayfield cutting hay in the heat and dust. He was very aware of what was left to be cut, yet was motivated to see how much had been completed. In our businesses, we often fixate on all that coming up. It does us and our teams good to occasionally look over what has already been cut and celebrate those accomplishments.
Commend contributions to the team, demonstration of values, extraordinary effort, or patience with a customer, etc. In our culture, we are bombarded with negative, critical commentary. Our news, social media and broadcast entertainment of all types tend to exist to portray conflict and the negative side of life. So, it is no wonder we are predisposed to criticize and focus on the negative. And yet, we all know those special folks that tend to share smiles, good thoughts and encouraging words. We are thirsty for and drawn to these uplifting interactions. Remind yourself of how important it is to commend with the same urgency that we reprimand. Commend your people openly and often.
In our Discovery Sessions with prospective clients, we ask about any recognition efforts they make, and most often they have some approach to honor years of service and maybe attendance. We get that it is hard to maintain ongoing recognition programs, yet it is a little sad that our go-to recognition programs boil down to how long a person has managed to continue with the business and that they have met the fundamental expectation to come to work when scheduled. We want to inspire our client leaders to move beyond these traditional approaches.
We each must condition ourselves to “See the Good”. Take the time to gather positive feedback from clients, customers and employees, and recognize contributions at team gatherings. Walk through the business and connect with team members by name. With a personal touch, share openly and learn to see meaningful recognition opportunities every day.
In our next message, we will talk about techniques to weave CPR into our 2020 business plans. For now, take a walk, see the good and practice a little CPR.