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“I don’t need a pat on the back to be motivated to do my job.”, a leader told me once, “Why should they?”  As I picked my jaw up from the table, I had to think about that for a little bit.  Perhaps, he was on to something there.  He had gained prominence in an organization through hard-work and diligence which reinforced the idea that he didn’t need acknowledgement. Competition and a survival of the fittest reigned supreme so everything was measured in WINS and LOSSES. Again, that made sense!  

The only problem is…the attitude and philosophy did not match the business we were in.  That attitude might have worked if the bottom line was profits and bonuses but it rarely works in the service industry.  The service industry is inherently relational and emphasizes trust and collaboration.  The mission of service minded companies is gaining loyal and repeating customers.  Okay, that makes sense too! 

“Employees report they are motivated 

to work harder when their boss shows 

appreciation for their work.”

One day, a friend and I approached a subject of job satisfaction. It reminded me of former conversations that I had with many of friends and family members including myself.  Even Forbes magazine two years ago reported that “four in five (81%) employees report they are motivated to work harder when their boss shows appreciation for their work.”  They went on to tell us that “when gratitude becomes a regular organizational practice, employees will feel both appreciated and valued, and their productivity and engagement will increase by leaps and bounds.”   Hmmm…maybe we are on to something here?   Does Attitude and Gratitude compete in your organization’s culture? After spending time discussing job satisfaction and productivity with others, it has made me wonder.

Does Attitude and Gratitude 

compete in your organization’s culture?

Let’s explore this a little deeper.  Attitude is our opinion or perspective towards things and people. Attitude is generally an inward facing emotion. Most great organizations seem to be born out of a frustration that someone wanted to overcome. Instead of complaining, they simply put their mind towards solving the problem. This kind of never-give-up or no quit attitude can make you successful, but does it make for a balanced perspective in your organization. Does this attitude positively or negatively impact your culture?
Whereas, gratitude is more focused on gratefulness, thankfulness, appreciation and acknowledgement. Gratitude is an outward facing emotion. Often in an organization that practices gratitude, there is less stress, better relationships and a greater emotional capacity to overcome adversity. But, does practicing gratefulness allow you to lose your competitive edge?
Reflecting on your organization’s high achievers might give you some of the answers you are looking for. Do your high achievers have a positive or negative attitude? How do they handle failure? What do they do that positively impacts others? What does your organization do to cultivate gratitude and appreciation?

Be the example by demonstrating a 

positive attitude and practicing gratitude.

You may want to consider making a deeper connection to others to develop better relationships in your organization which can play a critical role in bringing about both success and happiness. This can be done by adopting a positive growth-mindset plus building your emotional capacity in order to see impactful results. 
Be the example by demonstrating a positive attitude and practicing gratitude. It will go a long way to building a great culture.  At least, it’s something to think about!