July '19

For the Business of Apparel Decorating

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1 2 P R I N T W E A R J U L Y 2 0 1 9 GOING BEYOND "THANK YOU" Who Doesn't Appreciate Being Appreciated? O n the long-running reality show "Survivor," I recall one participant sharing a saying his grandfather often used: "If you want to be heard, speak up. If you want to be seen, stand up. If you want to be appreciated, shut up!" It certainly seemed a clever barb when he uttered it, but it made me wonder if it didn't offer some meaningful application to the successfully managed business. And, indeed, I concluded that it does, in terms not necessarily of shutting up, but by knowing when and how to express appreciation effectively. I believe appreciation is a fundamental human need as vital as the air we breathe, feeling safe, and belonging. It is uncommon, though, to hear someone outwardly expect apprecia- tion for something they've done—probably because they fear if they demand it, the words or acts that follow will be obligatory and, therefore, insincere. Still, I don't know of a single soul that doesn't relish words of praise and thanks. Yet, to be appreciated, I believe one needs to know how to appreciate others first. APPLY APPRECIATION WISELY Who are the people that deserve hearing how much you appreciate them? Your customers? Yep, that's a given. Your employees? Of course. Your suppliers? It couldn't hurt. Your competi- tors? Well, I wouldn't overtly express your appreciation to them, but there is something to be said about how they help you stay sharp as an industry leader. So, when you think about it, no one is excluded from the potential list of people you could appreciate. If you made a list of who you would like to have appreciate you and your efforts, I imagine the list would be similar, if not identical. But where does the appreciation exchange cycle begin and how do you keep it real? It begins with you and depends on you. When a customer's actions or employee's work is something you would like to see continuingly, you do not want to leave the reoccurrence to chance. You must recognize and reward it. When someone's contribu- tion is exceptional, you must encourage that excellence. A SIMPLE RECIPE FOR APPRECIATION Expressing appreciation is the skill of giving recognition and encouragement to people whose behavior helps you achieve your goals and objectives. An effective sign of ap- preciation is more than a pat on the back or a vague 'thank you.' Appreciation should provide information that helps others un- derstand what precisely it was that helped you, what it took on their part to contrib- ute, and what it meant to you personally. An effective show of sincere appreciation should contain the following three ele- ments: Specific reference to the action you BUSINESS MANAGEMENT Your Personal Business Trainer V i n c e D i C e c c o

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