Say What You Are Really Saying!

By Mary Verstraete

Have you ever been told, “You did a great job.” Did you fully understand what the person was communicating to you? The statement may have produced an appreciative experience, but lacked definition.

Acknowledging gives definition. It is recognizing a particular ability and how it was specifically demonstrated.


Tara, I’ve noticed your strategic thinking in putting together a plan for your department—it’s thorough, organized, and clearly written. In this example, Tara is genuinely acknowledged and has the opportunity to observe herself through a particular lens of truth.

The result: A more accurate self-awareness, which then contributes to her confidence.

If Tara doesn’t believe in her abilities, this is an obstacle that will hinder her confidence to make insightful decisions that in turn can be a roadblock to her performance.

Employees want to trust that you are sincere, authentic, genuine, truthful, and have their best interest at the forefront. Acknowledging embodies these characteristics and evokes a capability within clients to genuinely believe in themselves and in their abilities.

This week:

  • Be intentionally observant
  • Communicate that observation
  • Celebrate for a moment that you added to someone’s self-awareness and confidence