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Praise Protocol

Praise is among the most powerful ways we communicate. It can be a true motivator.

Effective praise can lead to positive performance. Likewise, poor praise techniques can be devastating.

One of the worst types of praise is called the “sandwich approach.” Management sandwiches negative feedback between two pieces of positive feedback. This is all too common, and it undermines not only the feedback being given, but also relationships with employees.

Be transparent. Share negative feedback in a straightforward manner and allow employees to understand your reasoning. Chances are, those certain unwanted behaviors won’t be repeated.

For praise to be most effective, it should be sincere and specific. Don’t praise every little thing. The impact will be lost. Save it for moments that really deserve it.

Identify exactly what your employee did well. If you want that behavior to be replicated, describe it as it’s being praised.

People in management are most successful when they are confident enough to ask their team members to teach them, too. Sometimes that can be the most powerful piece of praise they give.

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