Simple Tools to Show Employee Appreciation

I just read an article written by J.T. O’Donnell, Founder and CEO of,in which she suggested asking each of your team members one question at the end of the work week before they head home:  What one thing are you most proud of getting done this week?”

O’Donnell, who sounds like my kind of leader, goes on to explain:  “No matter how stressful or busy our week was, I want employees to leave on a positive note. Work is where they spend a third of their lives each week. It’s part of their identity. It’s something they talk about with friends and family over the weekend. Making them feel good about what they do and where they do it is very important to me.” 

O’Donnell’s article reminded me of a story told to me years ago by someone who experienced it.

As a young man Julio’s first job was on the line at a factory. Every Friday, his boss would stand by the time clock and wait for the workers to clock out. As they did, he shook their hands, called them by name and thanked them for the work they had done that week.

When he told me this story, Julio was in his late 50’s. The impact of his boss’ actions never left him. Now a leader himself, he does the equivalent with his team every week.

Whether you are paid to be a leader in your organization or you simply want to make a contribution to improve the work environment, doing either or both of these things supports your intentions:

  • “What was the best part of your week,” and/or
  • “Thanks for the work you did this week.”

And don’t forget to include yourself in this. Sometimes we have to do for ourselves what we wish others would. 

Remember, you get more of what you focus on. By focusing on how much you appreciate your employees and co-workers, they will be more committed to performing in a way that lives up to your appreciation.

Here is the link for O’Donnell’s full article:

OR search for: “Do This 1 Thing Every Friday to Improve Employee Satisfaction” O’Donnell

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