For as much as I encourage people to talk and have actual conversations at work, sometimes a simple gesture is all it takes to speak volumes.
I was out for a run, hoping that inspiration would strike, and that somewhere I’d come up with a topic to write about that day. Then, on about mile two, it happened. An older man walking toward me in slow, shuffling steps on the same path flashed a smile and two thumbs up for my effort, and encouraged me to keep running. I smiled and waved back.
I kept smiling for the rest of my run. That simple gesture brightened my day, provided validation and acknowledgement of my hard work.
Then I realized a couple things. I saw the man because I was looking up and taking note of my surroundings. Secondly, it doesn’t take a great effort to make someone feel greatly appreciated for their efforts.
We all need two thumbs up from time to time. So, here’s the question for you. When was the last time you looked up?
Work is important. There are things that have to get done. But there’s also a point when you need to push back from your desk, pay attention to your surroundings and take notice of the people offering encouragement, a kind word or a complement. I know you have colleagues, friends and family members trying to do that. Take notice of their actions. You don’t even have to stop running.
Business communication takes different forms, including words of encouragement to a colleague.
You don’t have to take time out of your busy day to offer encouragement to someone else. Seeing the two thumbs up on my run put a spring in my step and made me want to (try to) run faster. Imagine how much more productive and enjoyable you work environment becomes when you colleagues have a spring in their step and want to work just a little harder.
So here is my message to you today. You are a rock star. You are up to big things. You’ve got great ideas and the skillset to follow through on them. You absolutely deserve two thumbs up today – and every day.
If you’re looking for ways to open the lines of communication with colleagues and business connections, I recommend leaving your name in the box marked “Let’s Do This!” Every week I provide sports conversation starters to using in business settings, as well as, ways to make sports useful in other business conversations like those involving networking, business development and personal branding. You’ll get strategies I use every day with professional athletes and coaches in my role as a sideline reporter with the Seattle Mariners and Seattle Seahawks.
Here’s to starting the week on a good note and with ideas on how to make sports useful in business. Which means bonus materials today. Woot!
First up you’ll notice a fresh batch of conversation starters. These are topics that will work in small talk around the office and with colleagues and help build your knowledge base at the same time. But make sure you keep reading for links on 3 Ways to Become a Baseball Fan for Business and ways you can use the NFL schedule to advance your career.
You’re going to find at least one baseball note in the #ConvoStarters from now through October. The length of the season can be a bit overwhelming if you’re not already a baseball fan. Here’s at video on how to become a fan and make sense of the information coming at you.
Lastly don’t wait until football season to put the NFL schedule to work for you. Here’s 4 Ways to Advance Your Career Using the NFL Schedule.
Want more tips like these and #ConvoStarters delivered right to your inbox? Leave your name in the box marked “Let’s Do This!” and they’ll arrive by 7am every Monday.