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Lessons from Leaders – Dr. Paul White

In this “Great Resignation” movement, employees are seeking roles where they feel valued and appreciated.  This week, we sat down with Dr. Paul White to learn more effective tactics for showing employees appreciation.  Dr. White co-wrote “The 5 Languages of Appreciation in the Workplace” with Dr. Gary Coleman, who authored the relationship book, “The 5 Love Languages”.  


The 5 Languages are the same – Words of Affirmation, Quality Time, Acts of Service, Tangible Gifts and Physical Touch – but the application is different. What’s important is understanding that not everyone wants to be recognized or shown appreciation in the same way.  Do you have teammates that don’t like public attention?  Maybe there are minimalists on your team that don’t want “tokens of appreciation.”


To show genuine appreciation for your staff, here are three steps to get started:

Appreciate the Person, Not Just Their Work – (3:23)

Typically, when organizations implement recognition programs they are centered around performance – meeting or exceeding sales goals, going above and beyond on a specific project, etc.  However, recognition and appreciation are not the same thing.  Employees “want to be valued as a person, not just for what they get done.”  While completing the work is important, demonstrating appreciation for your staff starts with letting them know that who they are and what they bring to your team matters more.

Learn Your Team’s Desired Language of Appreciation – (9:09)

Showing someone you appreciate them in a way that’s personal to them isn’t rocket science and it doesn’t have to be expensive either.  It just takes that extra step to let people know you are thinking of them.  It’s not just about saying “good job,” but letting them know specifically what they did that was great and why it was important to the team, the company or the client.  If you are ordering food, know what their go-to donut or Chick-fil-A order is and get it without even asking.  

Encourage Your Staff to Show Appreciation to Each Other – (26:03)

Gestures of appreciation don’t have to just emanate from leaders.  People largely don’t just work for managers.  Most of the time they are part of a team and they want to know that they are valued on the team too.  It starts from the top down, but it’s just as important for teammates to communicate that their daily life would be tougher without each other serving the roles they do.  

It just takes one handwritten note or one intentional thank you to get started. To learn more about appreciation, check out Dr. Paul White’s book.  You can also email him at yesdrpaul@gmail.com with the subject “Flip the Switch” to receive a free copy of his expanded Motivating By Appreciation report ($25 value) and a discount code to purchase the Appreciation evaluation.

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Flip the Switch

Uncovering The 5 Languages of Appreciation in the Workplace w/ Dr. Paul White

The “Great Resignation” or “Great Migration” has incited a movement by employees to find roles where they feel valued and appreciated.  But not everyone wants to be recognized or shown appreciation in the same way.  In this episode, David sits down with Dr. Paul White, author of “The 5 Languages of Appreciation in the Workplace”, to talk about how to show appreciation for your staff in ways that are meaningful to them.  

Show Notes

2:55     Refocusing on Employee Engagement 

5:18      The Great Resignation or the Great Migration?

6:26      Recognize the Person, Not Just Their Work

8:41      Foundation for 5 Languages of Appreciation book

10:14   Words of Affirmation

12:39   Quality Time

13:55   Acts of Service

15:28   Tangible Gifts

17:28   Physical Touch

18:58   Learning Your Team’s Desired Language of Appreciation

21:33   Appreciation is NOT the Same as Recognition

24:08   The Correlation Between Profitability and Appreciation

26:19   Encouraging Appreciation Among Colleagues

28:24   Financial Impact of Replacing Employees

32:02   Generational Preferences in Recognition

35:21   3 Priority Groups to Recognize

36:47   Recognizing Underperforming Staff

42:59   Counter Opinions in Appreciation

45:15   Creative Demonstrations of Appreciation

For more on topics covered in this episode:

5 Languages of Appreciation in the Workplace by Dr. Paul White and Dr. Gary Chapman

Appreciation @ Work  |  Blog 


The 5 Love Languages by Dr. Gary Chapman

True Cost of Replacing an Employee

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Email yesdrpaul@gmail.com with subject “Flip the Switch” to receive a free copy of Dr. White’s expanded Motivating By Appreciation report ($25 value) and a discount code to purchase the Appreciation evaluation.

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