The power of saying “Thank you” (Tom Peters)

Click to watch video on Youtube

Before we respond to a situation, the first step of Inner Leadership is to centre and ground ourselves: to connect deeply with who we are and what matters most to us.

One very simple and powerful way of achieving this, and reinforcing it, is to get into the habit of saying “Thank you.”

In this short video Tom Peters explains why, after more than 30 years as a top management guru, saying “Thank you” is still his “number one top tip”:

“It gets you further and it also makes you a better human being.”

Part of the reason this is so powerful is because, as American psychologist William James told us:

“The deepest human need is the need to be appreciated.”

When we say “Thank you” we are giving people that appreciation.

And in a time of change, saying “Thank you” also brings three other important benefits:

  • It reminds us of what is important, what is worth being grateful for
  • It reminds us of what is going well, even if not everything is
  • It builds stronger relationships

And that means that when the next issue arises, we start from a place of:

  • greater clarity about what matters most
  • stronger motivation and morale
  • stronger relationships with the people who can help us do what needs to be done

In a time of change, this is a foundation worth building.

When was the last time you said thank you to someone? When was the last time you said thank you to yourself? What would happen if you said thank you to yourself and at least three other people every day?

Thank you for reading.


Adapted from Inner Leadership: tools for building inspiration in times of change.

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