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Janet's Blog: 25th July

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Are you a sulky teenager or screaming toddler when it comes to disappointment?

I was at an annual pub awards recently. Five tenants were selected to win £2000 each for their pubs as reward for achieving glowing reports as assessed by Silent Customers.

No one knew who the winners were until the day, and while I was more than chuffed for the deserved tenants who won, I couldn’t help but notice the utter disappointment on some of the faces of those that didn’t. I felt awful for them and somehow responsible.       

Recognising and rewarding good behaviour is key to encourage more of what we want. As children we crave approval from our parents, it’s what shapes our morals, anchors our values and drives us to learn, but as adults we don’t seem to stop needing or wanting praise. When we do well at something and it is ‘recognised’ by another person we are ecstatic with happiness but the polar opposite emotions surface when someone ‘points out’ that we are not as brilliant as we would like to believe. At the very best we become defensive, sulky, demotivated, dismissive teenagers at the very worst full blown toddler tantrums can occur.      

The downside of my job is delivering a low scoring report with less than glowing feedback. Very occasionally I have to deal with a toddler style tantrum backlash but most of the time, when someone calls about a low scoring report, all they need is some reassurance and some recognition for the things they are doing well.

None of us can win every time, are perfect or have perfect businesses but we all have positive attributes and have certain skills that we excel in. Sometimes, when we are focused on rewarding a few, we would do well to also recognise the efforts of those who are trying.  It has led me to think how I can do this more in my business, what about you?