Individuals in the workplace need to feel appreciated in order to enjoy their job, do their best work, have positive work relationships and stay with their organization long-term. The key ingredient in meaningful, significant, effective appreciation is individualization—expressing appreciation in the recipient’s preferred “language”. Varying the ways you communicate appreciation will improve your chances of hitting the mark!

  1. Give a verbal compliment (say “thanks for . . .”; tell them, “I’m glad you are part of the team.”)
  2. Write an email (“I just wanted to let you know. . .; “It is really helpful to me when you. . .”)
  3. Stop by and see how your colleague is doing. Spend a few minutes just chatting and checking in on them.
  4. Do something together with your co-worker (eat together—either at work or away from the workplace.)
  5. Do a small task for someone spontaneously (hold open the door, offer to carry something.)
  6. Stop by their workspace and see if they need any help getting something done.
  7. Buy them a coffee, a drink, a snack or dessert.
  8. Get them a magazine related to an area of interest they have (sports, hobbies, a place they would like to visit.)
  9. Give them a “high five” when they have completed a task (especially one that has been challenging or they have been working on a while.)
  10. Greet your colleague warmly, with a smile and a handshake and give a warm welcome (something like “It’s good to see you!”; “How is your day going?”)


Donna Coppock hosted one of our most popular practitioner sessions at the 24th Annual Gathering of Games, The 5 Languages of Appreciation. If you'd like to dig deeper into employee engagement and understanding how to get the best out of your employees check out our Great Game workshops happening year round!