How to Praise Your Finance Team

In a world of participation ribbons, genuine praise can still be an effective way to motivate a finance team. People crave positive feedback and real recognition. Here are some tips for offering the acknowledgement that your finance team craves.

Tip 1: Be Timely
As much as possible try to offer praise in the moment to maximize impact.

Tip 2: Be Specific
It is not enough to tell an employee that they did a good job. Tell them exactly what they did well. This reinforces that you pay attention to specifics, but also helps the employee understand what success looks like – helping them to repeat it down the road.

Tip 3: Connect to Larger Goals
Connect your praise to the furthering of company goals. This helps give context and additional meaning to the praise, making your words much more powerful.

Tip 4: Authenticity
Be genuine in your praise. Keep it appropriate relative to the team member’s accomplishment. Never praise for the sake of praising. It will seem like you’re checking off something on your “to do” list.

Tip 5: Postpone Constructive Feedback
Praise should stand on its own. If you add constructive feedback into the mix, it’s possible that the employee will focus on the constructive part of the messaging and not on the praise.

Tip 6: Identify Areas of Improvement
Has an employee put in extra effort to improve in a given area? Recognition of this additional energy and subsequent improvement should be noted and reinforced.

Tip 7: Create a Culture of Recognition
Create a culture of recognition where actions are praise not only by you, but by fellow employees. Encourage your team to send out emails if they’ve received outside feedback from another department, team or client about a colleague’s exceptional effort and results.

Read: For tips on creating a recognition culture read this article.

Tip 8: Employee Preference
Some employees prefer to be praised in front of their colleagues, while others shrink from being made the centre of attention. Part of offering effective praise is understanding how people prefer to receive it.

Key Takeaways
Good behavior is reinforced when it’s praised in a genuine and timely manner. Be specific in your positive feedback and link it to the overall goals of the organization. Create a culture of recognition and remember not to combine praise with constructive feedback. Fundamentally, praising your employees creates a desire to continue to deliver and results in better performance.

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