Thanks, Kids!

Every year, at this time?around Mother’s Day and Father’s Day, a conversation takes place in homes everywhere.

It goes something like this:

‘Why is there a Mother’s Day and a Father’s Day every year? ?Why isn’t there a ‘Kid’s Day’?’

You know the typical response.

‘Because EVERY DAY day is Kid’s Day!!’

Sound familiar?

Well, maybe we ought to consider REALLY making every day ‘Kid’s Day’. ?They are, after all, helping us to be happier and healthier!

In today’s issue of the The University of California, Riverside Highlander, Dean Mayorga reports that “a series of studies conducted by researchers from UC Riverside, Stanford University and the University of British Columbia have found that parenting is associated with higher feelings of happiness and ?meaning? than non-parents. ”

Combine that with everything we are learning about the importance of gratitude, like an article in the Washington Times yesterday, research is showing that gratitude is proving to be a key component of health. ?In one study, ?Dr. Robert Emmons?divided his study participants into three groups. ?He asked one group to write down what they were grateful for, another group to note their gripes, while a third to note anything that was notable to them. ?Emmons discovered, writes Eric Nelson, “that those in the gratitude group generally felt better about their lives, were more optimistic about the future and reported fewer health problems than the other participants.”

The gripes can be the easiest to notice – most of us know that already (and that can be particularly true for parents). ?Well, the good new is, that can be changed! ?Emmons’ studies show that people who regularly (daily) practice gratitude reap the greatest rewards – and, like other discoveries in neuroscience about how much more control we have over our thoughts, feelings, and behaviors – there is evidence that you can increase your ‘gratitude meter’ with regular practice!

So, get out there and thank your kids … today and every day!

And, do not fear, non-parents! ?You can still benefit by expressing gratitude to anyone in your life that matters to you (any ‘meaningful’ relationship works!).? Even if you do not tell them (although that is a very good idea), make note of your gratitude in a journal…and you’ll reap the same health and happiness rewards as we grateful parents!

Deri Latimer, B Mgt, CSP, is an expert in positive possibilities for people! She is one of fewer than 10% of speakers globally who hold the designation of Certified Speaking Professional. Deri combines a Business degree in Human Resources with experience from business sectors including health care, manufacturing, education, agriculture, government, mining, transportation, tourism, and professional services. Deri provides practical strategies for mental health ‘at work’; impacting individuals and organizations?to increase resilience to change, energize engagement with the organization, and propel meaningful performance results that last!??



Ten Tips To Revitalize Your Recognition Strategy

Employee recognition is not just a nice thing to do for people; it?s the right thing to do for your team and for your organization.? That is, if you want to keep benefiting from the positive outcomes your team members create for your business!

Every week I am in a different workplace interacting with different people, and yet there is a common theme in our discussions.? There is a recognition-deficit among us!!? When I ask people what they’d like to see MORE OF from their leader, or when I ask them what their organization can do to engage them MORE, the overwhelming response is … provide more recognition!

An effective employee recognition strategy is a communication tool that is simple, immediate, and powerfully reinforcing.? Here are some simple tips to revitalize your recognition strategy:

1. Be mindful. What is important to recognize?? Who will you recognize (individual, team)?? When, where and how will you provide the recognition?? What principles or values does this recognition support?? What are the potential benefits and pitfalls of this recognition?

2. Engage the team. Ask your team members for their ideas on recognition.? What have they experienced and liked?? What have they not experienced that they think might be a great idea?? Perhaps invite them to form a sub-team whose sole purpose is to generate new recognition ideas.

3. Plan it. Put it into your calendar as a reminder (daily, weekly, etc.)? This will keep recognition ?top of mind?.? I know, it sounds a bit like you are “planning to be spontaneous”.? You are busy.? You know recognition is important to you, your team and your organization.? The flag in your calendar is just a reminder to keep you on track.

4. Document it. Keep track of your recognition efforts ? who was recognized, what was the recognition for , when did it take place, how did it happen?? Make a note of the reception you received; was it positive, negative, neutral?

5. Own it. Even if the recognition program or token comes from the organization, make it your own.? You will be able to deliver it much more authentically if you take what’s available to you and add a little personal twist to it.

6. Use the platinum rule. You’ve heard of the golden rule – treat people as you’d like to be treated.? Well, when we are talking about recognition, the <em>platinum rule </em>works best.? Treat people as <strong>THEY</strong> would like to be treated.? Craft your recognition to suit the needs and interests of the receiver.

7. Be enthusiastic. Communicate the importance of recognition by maintaining high, positive energy when you are delivering recognition.? If you aren’t in that emotional state, get there (see?Wake Up To Your Habits!’ cards as a resource to help you) …or wait until a better time.

8. Time it well. Ensure that you deliver recognition as close as possible to the behaviour or outcome you are reinforcing.? Make sure the recipient is ?available? ? physically and emotionally ? to receive it.

9. Set people up to succeed. Put people in roles they find energizing and meaningful.? Help them to be easy candidates for recognition.

10.Use a variety of tools. Almost nothing beats a sincere ?thank you? from you.?? You can also provide learning opportunities, assign a special project, and fill your website with success stories.

Happy recognizing!

Deri Latimer, B. Mgt., CSP, is an expert in possibilities for people! She is one of the top 10% of speakers globally who hold the designation of Certified Speaking Professional, the speaking profession?s measure of excellence in professional platform skill. Deri combines a Business degree in Human Resources with experience from business sectors including health care, manufacturing, education, agriculture, government, mining, transportation, tourism, and professional services. Deri helps individuals and organizations optimize their performance by managing their energy; applying the latest research and practice in positive psychology, appreciative inquiry, emotional intelligence, and employee engagement.