I don't know if it's a "thing" anymore, but I remember feeling good when I got a gold star for "being a good friend," or "turning my work in on time."
In our current Leadership Book Club choice, Broadcasting Happiness, author Michelle Gielan talks about how to use happiness to nurture those good gold-star feelings in a climate of appreciation.
I love this idea because it draws attention toward something that is severely lacking in most workplaces: Appreciation.
Leaders have many reasons for not spreading the love more generously...
While these are understandable feelings, they distract us from leadership actions that create a motivating environment where people are excited to contribute and where positive energy fuels success.
Instead of focusing on the risks associated with positive feedback and appreciation, I recommend using an updated, workplace-appropriate version of "gold stars." Consider this a fun way of identifying something your team is working toward, engaging everyone in seeking examples of positive action, and measuring progress toward the goal.
I first learned about this idea from a system called Your Best Year Yet, by Jinny Ditzler. Since then, I have noticed the concept used in many places, especially with the ample research provided by the Gaming industry, which proves the effectiveness of applying Gaming principles to certain aspects of work to increase motivation.
Basically, it involves the following:
If you want to build a more positive workplace and get EVERYONE on the appreciation train, this is a GREAT solution!
Let me hear from you! Have you developed a game like this with your work team? Join our FREE Leadership Book Club Community and share a picture or a description. And, let me know if you want more. I'd be happy to share my step-by-step guide, or come to your workplace to guide you through the process.
Make it a gold star day!
P.S. If you haven't yet joined the Leadership Book Club, do it today! It's FREE, FUN, and a great way to stay proactive about your own leadership growth.
About the Author: Claire Laughlin is a highly regarded training expert who has dedicated her career to studying and improving patterns of communication in organizations. Claire works across various industries, coaching individuals and creating large scale, global-reaching training programs designed to uplift and support excellence across functions and cultural divides. Claire shares her expertise by offering training solutions for all levels of professional development.
Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash. Thanks Markus!