in Career Development, Improvement & Development, Leading the Self

The Other Side of Appreciation

[Note: This post is a continuation of thoughts from my earlier post “Building Engaged Teams with Power of Appreciation”]

Yes, appreciation is the fuel that drives people forward and leaders need to learn the art of genuinely appreciating the behaviors they value. On the other side of this equation is the person who is being appreciated, the professional whose inner desire is to be accepted, appreciated and understood. The challenge in creating a culture of appreciation is to ensure that people don’t just do things for the sake of being appreciated.

Human beings have an obsession to decode success. The first time they do something new, it is a creative act, the magic. If it works, they try to decode the act, look for patterns and create formulas. Formulas rob us of the the creative fun involved in doing our work.

If you are a high performer who is blessed with a lot of appreciation from your leaders and peers, here are a few points to note:

  1. Don’t let it go to your head. Sachin Tendulkar is one of the greatest cricketers world has ever produced. Recently when he was asked about the secret of his humility, his response was simple, “I don’t let success, records and adulation go into my head”. Appreciation should catalyze our creativity.
  2. Appreciation is a by-product. Treat it accordingly. When you do your work with a constant expectation of appreciation, you are working for something which is not in your control. You become too dependent on an external validation to let others decide if your work was good. Focus on inner satisfaction of doing your work in the best possible way and let appreciation be a by-product.
  3. The work you are appreciated for should meet the goal. What if you shined but the team lost? The joy of being appreciated when your efforts helped the team win is very different from being appreciated when you shined but the team failed.

These pointers are important to consider, else appreciation is a double-edged sword that can go either way. Make sure the appreciation you receive helps you elevate yourself.

Join in the conversation: How do you deal with all the appreciation you receive? Does it go to your head or heart?

– – – – –

Stay Tuned: Subscribe via RSS, Connect via Facebook or Follow us on Twitter. You can also subscribe to updates via email using the section at the bottom of the page. Looking forward to the conversations!

  1. Another great post, Tanmay. Too often people’s self worth is dependent on others views, which makes it precarious. It’s best when appreciation from others is the “icing on the cake” and not the substance of your nourishment. I think the key is introspection, understanding your strengths and weaknesses, and developing an accurate self-perception. Self knowledge helps us maintain humility (not let appreciation go to our head) and also not be dependent on others for recognition.

  2. Appreciation flows from the heart and ends in the heart.
    Words are illuminant of it.

  3. Agree with Jesse on the point of self-knowledge and humility. Living in your authentic self allows you to gracefully accept appreciation from others with a simple thank you. It also adds affirmation that the journey you are on is adding value to others.

  4. You are absolutely correct to say that appreciation creates a culture of companionship. Sometime appreciation may lead to emotionally charged state-vulnerable state of mind. How can it be avoided?

  5. Nice post ! I agree with Jesse…” I think the key is introspection, understanding your strengths and weaknesses, and developing an accurate self-perception.”

Comments are closed.