Passing the Bobton

Let me introduce you to uLEAD’s “Bob”. Bob has recently joined our staff team as the resident "recognizer." As far as staff teams go we do a pretty good job of encouraging and appreciating one another. I am sure some staff teams do better and I am confident that some teams are much worse. However, most of our recognition of each other is pretty informal. So Bob has joined the team to really step up our appreciation game!

Douglas Stone and Sheila Heen address this need for appreciation in their book Thanks for the Feedback.

“Appreciation motivates us—it gives us a bounce in our step and the energy to redouble our efforts. When people complain that they don’t get enough feedback at work, they often mean that they wonder whether anyone notices or cares how hard they’re working. They don’t want advice. They want appreciation.”

This is where Bob comes in. Each month we sit down as a staff team and one member takes time to specifically recognize another team member for his or her work over the past month, specifically pointing out one area or project in which he or she went above and beyond. It is during this time that we assign Bob to their sidekick for the next month. He serves as a reminder of how much the team appreciates hard work and serves as inspiration to continue striving to do your best. During that month, the recipient must add a personal touch to Bob. This may be the addition of a piece of clothing, a new hairstyle or even a little tattoo. We personalize Bob to make sure that he is also transformed by the culture of our team. At the end of the month, it is then this person’s responsibility to pass Bob along in the next meeting. So Bob also serves as a reminder for us to keep an eye out for the amazing work our team members are doing on a daily basis.

So thanks to Bob, uLEAD is working at being more appreciative of our fantastic team members and all each one does to help better serve our clients.

My question for you is: What is your BOB? What serves as your reminder to show appreciation to your team? And, how will you find ways to tangibly express this appreciation for those that work so hard to make your organization amazing?