Nov 21, 2023

Thankfulness in the Workplace

A woman working looking at a computer with a headset on, putting her hands over her heart in thankfulness.

Gratitude is at the heart of the holiday season, but showing gratitude can be hard to put into practice as the season often means a full schedule of plans and projects. However, taking the time to recognize how far you’ve come this year and the things you’ve accomplished, as well as appreciating your coworkers, helps to develop a thankful attitude to wrap up the year. As the holiday season approaches, how should you show your appreciation at work? How do you adapt an attitude of gratitude? And why is it pivotal to the workplace?

Expressing your appreciation not only goes a long way for your team and coworkers, but it also helps to cultivate a more positive attitude for yourself. Showing gratitude improves overall well-being, reduces stress, and creates a more welcoming and collaborative work environment. Having a thankful mindset each day has been reported to improve sleep and decrease depression and anxiety, so thankfulness in the workplace benefits not only your mental health but your physical health, as well!

Additionally, being intentional in gratitude also helps create an environment and culture in which people feel valued and appreciated for who they are and their work. This is imperative to employee satisfaction and creating an inclusive and supportive workplace. If you’re a manager or leader, modeling gratitude is going to have a domino effect on your employees. When thankfulness is modeled, it is more likely to become the norm within your workplace as employees adopt it as their own. Everyone wants to be told they’re doing a good job!

Here are some highlights on how to keep a grateful heart in the workplace and spread thankfulness around your office this holiday season:

Write Down 3 Things/People You’re Thankful For

Writing things down that make you feel thankful will help you be more aware and mindful of the good and helpful things that surround you every day. Gratitude can often come with deep reflection. Writing down things you’ve reflected on will help you slow down and take time to appreciate the positive people and parts of your job that you have.

It’s easy for us to take for granted the things we’ve accomplished or the people around us who make life feel a little lighter. November is the perfect chance to take a step back and practice intentional and mindful gratitude. Writing down what you’re thankful for is a great physical expression of what you feel! This is also a great time to reflect on the things you appreciated or accomplished this past year. Gratitude and giving thanks don’t always have to be associated with others but instead can include being grateful to yourself for all you made it through and accomplished this past year. Take a step back and see all the good that surrounds you.

Send an Email or Teams/Slack Message to Thank Them

Now that you’ve been reflective and can spot the things or ways you appreciate people around you, tell them! Send your coworkers an email or message to tell them how and why you appreciate them. Whether this be their character or their work on a project, people appreciate being seen and want to be acknowledged. Recognized employees are 12 times more likely to have strong business outcomes. Some may find it intimidating to give or receive praise in person, so going out of your way to recognize them virtually can be just as good as saying thank you in person.

Give Praise in the Moment

Verbal recognition is intentional and powerful. If you’re feeling thankful for someone or believe someone’s work was impressive, you should share that with them. People love to be seen and noticed, especially for their work and character. Being intentional at the moment and praising a coworker can help create healthy working relationships and create more productive and secure teams that are quick to celebrate another and their accomplishments and ideas.

Perform Random Acts of Kindness to Give Thanks

Rather than speaking your gratitude, you can show it! Acts of service can go a long way to show someone you appreciate them. For example, sharing baked goods or giving a small gift is a quick way to show someone you care. Here are some small acts of kindness that can go a long way for a fellow coworker:

  • Ask someone to join you for lunch
  • Bring a baked good to share
  • Give someone a compliment
  • Ask how they are or get to know their life outside of work
  • Leave them a nice note
  • Give them a shoutout in a team meeting

A small act of kindness can show your gratitude in an easy way. Try one of these to show someone you appreciate them!

Create Appreciation Spaces for Gratitude

In your team huddles or weekly meetings, you can create a dedicated time and space to recognize people on your team. This helps create a routine of gratefulness and allows your coworkers to adopt an attitude of gratitude consistently as it’s being modeled and prioritized in your workplace. This could be during meetings or hosting an event to appreciate your employees, like a Thanksgiving Potluck or Holiday Party. Creating intentional spaces for appreciation allows for a consistent culture of thankfulness. The more gratitude there is, the better things are.

Being thankful isn’t limited to the holiday season; there’s no better time to introduce these practices. Take a deep breath and reflect on the blessings in your life. Tell the people around you how and why you appreciate them. Intentional reflectivity allows you to see your blessings clearly and fills you with joy! Sharing your gratitude with yourself and others will benefit you and those around you in the long run.

At LCS, we believe gratitude is essential to the workplace! We host events throughout the year to celebrate and appreciate our employees. This gives our employees a chance to show appreciation to each other using our FOND recognition program. Join us to be a part of a culture of gratitude!