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  • Personal Brands: Words are Cheap

    Worker with Mouth Cover photo from ShutterstockDo you ever feel like you’ve done everything right and you’re still met with opposition or friction? You watch your words. You focus on being as supportive and grateful to the people who help you or support you.  And, yet in some of your business relationships you feel that there’s still some hesitation or stalls and you can’t put your finger on exactly why that is.

    Maybe it’s your words.

    Not everyone appreciates or values when someone says something kind or even generously praises them.  It could be for them “talk is cheap”.  It could be that the words don’t mean anything without action behind them. Consider that for some without a time investment around the words, the words feel empty.  And, for others words are really cheap. Without a gift or an outward sign of appreciation, words seem so hallow.

    Consider also that for some, their experience is that words of kindness and appreciation are always followed with a request for something more or a special favor.  There’s doubt in the genuineness of the words.

    The best way to appreciate someone is to do so in a way that they like to be appreciated. [tweet this]

    In a way that they value and in a manner that they feel valued.

    What if your words really mean something?

    We speak and appreciation someone in a manner that we often value. It’s important that we make note that what we find value in doesn’t necessarily mean that someone else will find that same or even any value in it.  So often we hear of the “golden rule”, when in business with the many diversity initiatives in organizations, we need to shift that to the “platinum rule”.

    The Golden Rule states “do to others as you would have done unto you”.  The Platinum Rule states “do to others as they would want done unto them”. The Platinum Rule takes into consideration their wants and perspective. It respects and values who they are and what they value.

    If you’re an introvert who finds it painfully draining to speak in front of a group of people, then how do you feel when you’ve done outstanding work and the way you are rewarded is that you are brought to the front of the room and forced to give a “mini-speech” in acceptance of your recognition? Do you really feel appreciated?

    Today, consider this:

    1. How do you like to receive appreciation?
    2. Think of someone today, in your work life, who you would be miserable without if they were no longer there or able to help or support you.
    3. Now, consider, how do they like to receive appreciation?

    Your challenge for this next week is to slow down and take notice of or even ask how do you prefer people to appreciate or thank you?

    Please share your findings in the comments below!

    Maria Elena Duron is a Marketing Coach and Strategist with Know, Like, + Ignite and @mariaduron on Twitter. Would you like practical tips to create and curate content and experiences worthy of being passed person-to-person? -Get exclusive access.

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    Posted in entrepreneurship, Personal Branding, Skill Development, Workplace Success
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