Employee Motivation: Extending Praise

One of the best ways to motive your employees is to make them feel good about the jobs they’ve completed. This means offering thoughtful and genuine praise on a regular basis. The trick to extending praise, however, is to make sure your employees or team members recognize it as authentic as opposed to something you’re offering simply to make them feel better.

Here are some things to keep in mind:

  1. When praising an employee for a job well done, make sure you specify exactly what it is they did that you liked or appreciated. Be as specific as possible so that they can identify the task and not only feel good about it but use it as a margin for future performances.
  2. Make sure you praise your employee directly. Don’t send an email or mention it to another employee so that he can extend the praise on your behalf. Meet face to face or mention it in a group setting where the employee will feel appreciated.
  3. Don’t wait for your employees or team members to ask you if you received their projects or have any critique. Extend your praise before they prompt you. Your willingness to stay on top of the game will show that you really did appreciate and care for the work they’ve done.
  4. It may feel awkward, but make sure you praise your employees regularly. You may have an employee you don’t particularly care for on a personal level, but he deserves praise for a job well done as well. Get over your feelings of insecurity and do your job!

It’s important to make sure you are offering genuine praise as opposed to simply patronising your employees to make them feel better about their jobs. Don’t offer praise where it isn’t warranted – but offer it often when it is!

Thanks again,


Sean McPheat

Managing Director

MTD Training   

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Updated on: 13 March, 2009

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