Kudos Deficiency Syndrome (KDS) is a term I've completely invented to describe a common workplace issue characterized by a lack of recognition and appreciation for employees' contributions. This syndrome leads to disengagement, reduced productivity, increased turnover, and a negative work culture. Unfortunately, KDS is becoming ever more widespread. Only about 15% of people say they express appreciation at work, and 35% say their managers have never thanked them! KDS is one of the many types of Organizational Inflammation wreaking havoc on our companies and the people in them.
Enter Appreciation, Stage Right
In a workplace, micro-aggressions are like those subtle, unintentional jabs that can erode a person's sense of belonging and well-being. They are like little darts that, when they accumulate, create a toxic environment.
Now, let's flip the script and introduce micro-appreciation. Call it "glimmers", "Silver Threads" "random acts of kindness", or "Affirmasil*", the name doesn't matter so much, as long as we're continuously practicing expressing authentic, genuine appreciation to the people around us.
I know the dominant narrative is that we're all supposed to be lone wolves, army of one, don't need nobody no how... but that's neither true nor healthy. And when we recognize the ways others contribute to our success, we dramatically improve things for everyone - including ourselves!
Here's the fine print:
The Power of Small Gestures: Just as micro-aggressions consist of small, negative actions, micro-gratitude comprises small, positive gestures. It's about recognizing and appreciating the little things people do for each other – a colleague's support, a supervisor's guidance, or a team member's contribution.
Building Positive Momentum: Much like micro-aggressions can snowball into a bigger issue, micro-gratitude can create a positive feedback loop. When people regularly express appreciation for the small things, it fosters a culture of kindness and camaraderie.
Reducing Workplace Tension: Micro-gratitude can counteract the tension caused by micro-aggressions. It's like applying soothing balm to those tiny wounds, making the workplace a more pleasant and harmonious space.
Cultivating Inclusivity: Just as micro-aggressions can make people feel excluded, micro-gratitude can foster inclusivity. When individuals feel valued for their everyday efforts, it sends a powerful message that they belong.
Transforming Workplace Culture: Over time, a workplace that embraces micro-gratitude can undergo a profound cultural transformation. It becomes a place where appreciation is a part of the daily routine, creating a positive and inclusive environment.
Now, let's be realistic. Microdosing appreciation doesn't mean ignoring challenges or pretending that everything is perfect. It's about acknowledging the rough patches while actively seeking those silver threads of joy amidst the complexities of work.
So, speaking as your Chief Happiness Officer, I encourage you to think about how you can encourage individuals and teams within your professional spaces to embrace this microdosing approach. How can you help them recognize and celebrate those small wins, express gratitude for each other's efforts, and ultimately, weave a workplace culture that's both resilient and joyful? It's a journey worth embarking upon, one micro-dose at a time.
*Affirmasil is brought to you by Happiness Is Courage, makers of Silver Threads and other effective treatments for stress and unhappiness. Side effects of Affirmasil may include increased team cohesion, spontaneous outbreaks of workplace joy, and a significant rise in job satisfaction. Some users have reported an unexpected surge in creativity and collaboration. Affirmasil is not for workplaces where appreciation is already in overdose. To avoid an overabundance of positivity, balance is recommended. Use of artificial or inauthentic Affirmasil is strongly contraindicated in all cases. Consult with your HR department before beginning a regimen of Affirmasil. Remember, a healthy workplace is a happy workplace. Use Affirmasil responsibly. For more information, visit Happiness Is Courage.