Recognition makes you feel good, among other things

We all know how good it feels when we receive recognition.

It not only puts a smile on our face but it has other significant benefits, too. It motivates us to do more of what gave us the positive reinforcement and therefore increases our confidence. These are important aspects for productivity and happiness.

The recognition can be as simple as two words: thank you. Or it can come in more structured ways, such as an award. That happened to me earlier this week, when fellow blogger, Laurie Bartolo, nominated me for the Leibster Blog Award.

Laurie and I recently found each other and I’ve been quickly impressed with the variety of Laurie’s skills, including her photography, human resources background, and her compassion for helping dogs in need. On her blog, she uses her photography skills to educate others about particular situations, but she takes it a step further and actually does something about it. This post is a great example. I feel really fortunate to have connected with Laurie and very much appreciate her recognizing “Graceful Leadership” for the Leibster award.

I find it interesting that the blogging world has figured out how to accomplish something that formal organizations often forget to do (which is to show appreciate for work you like). There are several blogging awards that circulate around, without any clear knowledge of who started it. Yet they take on a life on their own and perpetuate easily and successfully. It proves that people loved to be recognized, resulting in awards that build and prosper for the ultimate intent–encouraging more blogging and more blog reading. The blogger feels good about receiving the award, wants to respect the process and move the award forward, and readers get a chance to find another blog that might be of interest. Everyone gets something out of the process. What’s not to like?

If you think about your work as a manager, in what ways are you saying thank you that move your goals forward? Do you say ‘thank you’ enough? Are your ways of recognizing others generating more positive reactions or do they irritate others? It’s a good idea to evaluate your current methods and make sure they are working the way you have intended!

The Liebster Blog Award is named after the German word, liebster, meaning dearest; hence the Liebster Blog Award means Dearest Blog Award. It is an award intended to recognize worthy, lesser known blogs and to help expose their work. (And yet another lesson for us — remembering to honor the work of reaching milestones as opposed to waiting for a final project completion, for example.)

The Liebster Award has the following rules — and I’ve taken the liberty of adding my own opinion about the rule in parenthesis:

1. Thank the giver and link back to the blogger who gave it to you. (I like this rule.)

2. Reveal your top five picks, with less than 200 readers, and let them know by leaving a comment on their blog. (You don’t always know how many readers a blog has, so this rule is impossible to execute accurately. Regarding selecting five blogs — I don’t like to be tied to a specific number. I’d rather move this along to blogs that I feel are really worthy as opposed to stretching or limiting to adhere to some set arbitrary number.)

3. Copy and paste the award on your blog. (That’s fine.)

4. Hope that the people you’ve sent the award to forward it to their five favorite up-and-coming bloggers and keep it going! (As noted, I’m all for recognition, but see my remark by Point Number Two. As an example, I’ve heard some people say you should give twice as much positive feedback as negative feedback when working with employees. I don’t agree. You should give the feedback in proportion to what the situation authentically reflects.)

I read a lot of blogs. And I could recommend five for you to check out. But I’m not.

Instead, I’m going to share one that is dearest to me, my favorite blog, “A Willingness to Grow.” I found LeeAnn’s blog this past summer when it was featured on “Freshly Pressed,” the WordPress daily showcase of the best of the best. (She’s beyond what I call up-and-coming, so I stretched that rule a bit, too.) I clearly remember reading her blog for the first time. She has a dog named Gracie, an immediate attention-getter for me, and her post was about her distaste for personality tests. I love the irony; [my work is based on using assessments], yet I was still drawn to her thoughts. LeeAnn weaves personal stories into inspirational life lessons. She does it in an unassuming way, filled with humor and reality. It’s not just me that feels this way. Kelly, one of her readers commented, “Your words always inspire me. I love that you are a deep thinker and can pull us into your thoughts without you even trying. I think you are brilliant.” If you enjoy an eclectic mix of topics, written by a fun, compassionate, and deep-thinking person, you should check out her blog.

And when you go about your day today, remember to find your own creative way to show appreciation for exceptional work you see around you.

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11 comments

  1. Hi Robin! Your Liebster Award is well deserved! I just love the insights you provide here and recognizing your blog was a no-brainer for me. And thanks so much for recognizing my work in your post about recognition! As usual, you make an interesting tie to the workplace, where recognition often seems so difficult. Despite tons of books on the topic, consultants who specialize in that niche, and in some companies, staff dedicated to creating and managing recognition and reward programs, people still leave work each day not feeling appreciated. Your point about the organic nature of the blogging award strikes a chord…if it’s so easy and effective in a somewhat unstructured environment, shouldn’t it be easy at work? Instead, it seems like one of the toughest things for managers to master. I am looking forward to reading LeeAnn’s blog (although I’m a fan of assessments, too). πŸ™‚ Thanks again for your kind words and hugs to Grace!

    • I agree, Laurie, feeling unappreciated in the workplace such a common theme — especially when it doesn’t need to be. Having you and your insights here has been wonderful and I look forward to learning more through your blog, too! I just visited your Facebook page — looks great!

  2. LeeAnn says:

    Robin – I am overwhelmed by many things on this post – and only hope that I can convey my emotions in an articulate manner. First of all, thank you from the bottom of my heart. I felt a connection to you since you first commented on my site. I began to look so forward to your impressions and reactions to my blog. I was a little surprised at the alarm I felt the week when the hurricane was in your area and you were quiet for a while (turns out you were on vacaction). I never imagined (or hoped) that a friendship could be built through this type of social media – what a wonderful surprise. It took me a while to find your blog, although I visited your work website several times. Since then, your posts have become something that I look forward to and that bring me a sense of peace. I always learn from your writings – and carry the messages with me for several days. The real sense of peace, though, comes from the reminder that there are people like you in the world. And it looks like Laurie’s blog will again reinforce that message for me. I am going to take some time to pass on this award as I am proud of the company I keep in you and Laurie – and want to find another worthy of you two.
    On a much lighter note, I love the picture of Grace and your husband. My world revolves around my Gracie, and she knows it. Whenever she gets the chance, she loves playing up to my husband. In fact, Oprah does the same thing.
    Thank you again.
    Have a wonderful weekend!

    • Hi LeeAnn — you conveyed your sentiments perfectly, as you always do. I couldn’t have imagined building a friendship like this, either. Quite special. Makes me happy. Grace sends hugs to Gracie, too! It would be stretching the truth to say she send hugs to Oprah, given that she is very jealous of our own cats, but I’ll send love to everyone in your household from me! πŸ™‚

  3. didiwright says:

    What a wonderful post for me to return to on your blog, Robin! It’s wonderful not only because you won the award (well done, I think you fully deserve all the recognition and awards in the world), but also because of your beautiful words and thoughts. I love the post, I adore that cute photo of Grace cuddling up to her dad, and I am thankful for the links to your two favourite blogs. I think you’ve done a great job introducing them to the rest of us, and I can’t wait to check them out as soon as I’ve got a bit of time. If you love them, they must be really good πŸ™‚

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