Martin Baines
Caught You


We have been working with one of our clients on a programme to help people raise their personal impact in the business ... in other words, getting them to think about the image that they want to portray to their 'internal customers'. This has been a really interesting programme to design and deliver and those that have attended have all said that it wasn't what they were expecting and has really got them thinking about self awareness and how they come across to others in the business and the impact their behaviour can have on others.

As we were setting up the room for the first workshop, I saw that the LCD TV, through which the slide deck was to be projected, didn't have a lead to connect the laptop with. Having asked my contact for some assistance, a few minutes later someone from the IT Department arrived and in no time had connected us up. After the laptop was set up I said, and I quote: "Thanks, you're a star ..." to the lady from IT and the reaction I got was, to me, quite surprising. She responded with a shocked " Ohhh ..." and a look of complete surprise on her face - this gesture of thanks was so alien to her, that it had literally taken her aback.

I was able to use this experience during the programme, specifically during a session on mindset and attitude, as an example of how even a very small gesture can actually make another person's day. During the discussion one of the participants said that she always says "you too" when cashiers or shop workers say to her "have a good day" and this got us thinking ... how often do you catch people doing things right?

In corporate life it is all too easy to find fault and to criticize people; when was the last time someone gave you a metaphorical "pat on the back" for a job well done? Perhaps you will need a few minutes to recall when that last happened for you, which is such a shame isn't it? Often it is the small token of appreciation that make us feel more valued at work, which in turn can make us more efficient and effective in our jobs. If you manage a team, when did you last give one of your team that "pat on the back"? We often suggest to managers that whilst it is easy to catch people doing things wrong, it is much better to catch people doing things right and to recognise this ... who knows what impact the simple "Thanks, you're a star..." had on that individual.

So, next time you find yourself about to criticise or find fault, think about this 'right:wrong ratio' ... for every wrong, find 5 rights and see what impact this has on confidence and belief ...

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