Praise is a leadership power tool. Use it to get more of things you want. But beware, there are some pitfalls.
Praising too little
This is a problem for many bosses. Every time you fail to deliver legitimate praise you lose an opportunity to make things better. You don’t have to wait to perfection to praise. You can praise progress and effort, too.
Praising too late
Praise delayed is often praise denied. Wait too long to praise and the potency of this power tool evaporates.
Praising without specifics
Effective praise tells team members what you value and what to do more of. General praise, like “good job” doesn’t tell anyone what you want. Praise achievement, progress, or effort, but be specific.
Praising with a “but”
Praise loses power when you dilute your praise with a “but.” Deliver your praise straight for maximum effect.
Praising things that don’t merit praise
This is the worst pitfall of all. If you praise just to make people feel good, they get the message that you thin showing up is good enough.