Thanking: System? Spontaneous?

So this week we’ve been chatting about the value of saying thanks. Make sure to drop by the other posts to see the discussion so far!

GiftCardPhil Thurman from Lifebridge Church in Madison, MS does some great stuff when it comes to thanking his team.  During their quarterly leadership development event they take time out to make sure that people know they are valued.  They give away gift cards (pedicures for ladies, bass pro shop for dudes)  They also use Land’s End to make some pretty sweet custom embroidery stuff.

You need to figure out your system of thanking people like Lifebridge has.  You are going to have people to thank week in and week out.  What is your regular thanking system look like?

The problem with a regular thanking system is the law of diminishing returns.  The first time a volunteer goes to the quarterly volunteer event and gets a gift card they love it!  The third time they begin to see it as a normal thing that happens.  By the time they’ve served for a couple years – they are budgeting around the gift cards and using them for Christmas gifts.  Get the idea?

So you need to plan for some spontaneity! A regular thank you system is important but is only the start.  You need to build in something totally unexpected to make a real impact:

  • What if you had a registered massage therapist come and serve in the volunteer suite?
  • If you are a portable church – what if a live band played as they set up?
  • Is it possible to give your entire team the morning off?  (Think about it.)

What about you?  I’m sure you have great ideas when it comes to thanking your team in both a systematic and spontaneous way?  Share your thoughts now!

1 Comment

  1. Wow, thanks for the recognition. Have a great team and we constantly try to think of new ways to say thanks. It goes a long way. Andy Stanley says what is rewarded is repeated.

    Any other good ideas are welcomed.

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