Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.
- William Arthur Ward
Thank you for leading. Being acknowledged for what you do, while not expected, can be one of the greatest encouragements and gifts you can receive. As a leader you have the ability to give the gift of thanks and encouragement to those you lead.
One of the ways you, as a leader, can show appreciation is through personal touch with a handwritten thank you note or a thoughtful email.
Think about the last time you sent a thank you note to someone who has served. If you are like me, it has been far too long.
Through the Lifeteams Toolbox, you can regularly send email communication that highlights the appreciation you feel toward your team members or to a specific team member for a job well done. Although it is a simple action, it shows the person who serves that you appreciate his or her contribution to the positive, caring atmosphere of River Valley Church each weekend.
When it comes to showing appreciation or giving thanks, here are a few tips:
- Do it often. Recognition of the people who serve should happen on a year-round, frequent, and informal basis. Begin by saying “thank you” often!
- Do it in different ways. Vary your recognition efforts, from the informal thank you and spontaneous treats to more formal events (Volunteer Appreciation April 19th at Radisson Blu).
- Be sincere. Make each occasion to recognize volunteers meaningful and an opportunity to reflect on the value Lifeteam members bring to our church.
- Recognize the person, not the work. Phrase recognition to emphasize the contribution of the individual and not the end result. “You did a great job!” as opposed to “This is a great job!”
- Be consistent. Make sure that whatever standards of recognition you establish can be consistently maintained by you for each and every volunteer you have.
- Be timely. Try to arrange recognition soon after an achievement has been reached—delaying until weeks or months later diminishes the value of your gratitude.
- Customize it. Make them feel special. Catch them in the act of serving with excellence and recognize them for it.
Finally, here’s a sample note you can use to encourage your team members:
Thank you for serving at River Valley Church this week. Your contribution to our church is very much appreciated. You are an integral part of creating the life giving, positive environment of River Valley Church. Your welcoming heart and smile make it possible for people who enter the doors to be better able to hear God’s word and experience God’s love.
We could not do this without you. Keep up the great work and thank you for your commitment to the house of God.