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

Click to watch video on Youtube

When so much around us is changing, learning to spot the opportunities in a new situation becomes even more important.

One simple and very powerful way of doing this 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.”

As American psychologist William James explained, one reason it is so powerful is because:

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

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

In a time of change, saying “Thank you” also brings three more 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 it means that when the next issue arises, we will start from a place of:

  • Greater clarity about what matters
  • Stronger motivation and morale
  • Stronger relationships with the people who can help us do what needs to be done, and most of all:
  • A habit of spotting the positives in any situation

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 two other people each day?

Thank you for reading.


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

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