Why you’re giving recognition the wrong way

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Three giant mirrors will reflect sunlight onto the valley floor of a small Norwegian town for the first time in winter

The South Norwegian town of Rjukan, will be getting sunlight for the first time this winter. Situated below a mountain the small town of 3000 people is shaded by the mountainside between the months of September and March, but this year huge mirrors will reflect the Sun’s rays down onto the town.

The $825,000, 550 sq foot mirrors are a welcome and innovative approach to recognizing these inhabitants needs for what we all expect to receive. Is there a correlation with managing peoples’ expectations? Okay, it’s a bit of a stretch but a question I asked myself was why did they build a town in the shadow of a mountain? That kind of questioning we can use to discuss how well we’re reflecting light on our people. If we’re constantly having to recognize and illuminate the work of others we should ask ourselves these 3 questions:

  1. Results should naturally stand out – why are we having to shine a light on them?
  2. If we’re in constant praising and appraising mode – does the work not generate any satisfaction itself?
  3. Evaluate the job – how would you feel doing a job in the shade?

If somebody’s role or work is left in the shade it may be the wrong decision to reflect a light onto it, instead look for the root cause and ask yourself why was the job was designed in the dark?

How do you recognize peoples’ work that normally goes unrecognized?

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