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Sending e-mails of praise.

#1 Sending e-mails of praise.
25/04/2013 23:53


It's a sad state of affairs when you have to ask others whether it is "acceptable" in a work environment to send e-mails of praise.

But alas, that is the gist of the question I pose to you today.

I work for a consulting company that some will argue takes itself way too seriously (which one doesn't?). I'm about to roll of a project and there are a number of individuals that have really been key to my success and helped me a huge amount.

I wanted to send an e-mail to each person (3-4) before I leave to tell them how they've helped me and how I've very much appreciated it and also CC their manager (who is actually the same person for those that I'm thanking).

Is this an "acceptable" practice? Or is it frowned upon? Because I've never really seen it done? Nor have I ever seen e-mails of praise and recognition floating around? Everyone seems to have their serious faces on at work with no time for this "mushy mushy praise or talk about feelings".

I'm quite new to the working world and so I've got a lot to learn, as such your thoughts on the matter would really be greatly appreciated....


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#2 RE: Sending e-mails of praise.
26/04/2013 00:13

SenorMick to AdamW (#1)

Great idea. They'll probabky really appreiate it. But why not just tell them in person?

And don't ruin it by cc'ing their manager and making it in to some formal feedback agenda though. Quietly email/speak with the manager (or better still the engagement partner) to praise the individuals - and don't tell them you've done it. If you have to shout about it you're probably doing it for the wrong reasons.

This is an easy one. Out of interest what did these little angels do for you?

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#3 RE: Sending e-mails of praise.
26/04/2013 09:42

AdamW to SenorMick (#2)


This is a fantastic idea, I think I'll send them an email (without CC'ing managers). And then speak quietly to their manager before we all roll off.

To be honest, if I tell you what they've done for me you'll probably think it wasn't particularly noteworthy and doesn't warrant what I'm doing.

One of those individuals has really helped me in terms of technical development and building my knowledge around the solution we are providing for our client. All their actions combined have put me in good stead for becoming a subject matter expert on certain processes within the solution we have built. Granted, a lot of the things they have done, one could argue, are completely expected and standard but still I'd like to make sure they know that I'm grateful for their support...

Maybe I'm too mushy mushy and should just toughen up for the big bad world of Consulting. How naïve grads can be eh?


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#4 RE: Sending e-mails of praise.
26/04/2013 10:15

tom1 to AdamW (#3)

This might sound harsh but I wouldn't go to their Managers as well... I'd just speak to the individual/email them. I am presuming they are more senior to you?

If so, just try and build a good relationship with those on the project so they sing your praises rather than being seen as someone who is going to be a little over the top in praising people and coming across as being full of their own self importance of giving feedback.

I'm sure the above isn't necessarily an accurate view of yourself but it could be the perception.

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#5 RE: Sending e-mails of praise.
26/04/2013 11:11

marsday to AdamW (#1)

No this is not a good idea. It is neither appropriate nor politic for a junior member of staff to start sending round praise to more senior members of staff. It could be misinterpreted as tom1 mentioned, it could also raise questions about whether you fit the company culture (if group hugs arent the norm dont try and instigate them via email or otherwise), and whether in fact you could have performed your duties without significant assistance.

And there is another aspect: entitlement.

As someone relatively new to the consultancy world you need to disabuse yourself of this annoying sense of gratitude to the world. No one wants to hear you thank your mother, manager, milkman and marketing department. You are, believe it or not, entitled to this assistance - it is essential professional development and any consulting firm which fails to provide even this is failing in both its responsibilities to you as an employer and to its shareholders and customers by failing to develop the very skills they are selling them.

Time to start taking yourself a little more seriously.

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#6 RE: Sending e-mails of praise.
26/04/2013 11:31

AdamW to marsday (#5)

Thank you all for the replies.

I've thought about the points raised.

Some very interesting ones in fact.

And I probably won't go through with sending these mails out. It's probably best if I just keep quiet.

I wouldn't say I take myself too seriously. But you're right, it's perception that can make others think otherwise.

And it probably would raise questions about whether I fit in within the culture or not because it isn't the norm here...

Adam W.

Group hug anyone?

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#7 RE: Sending e-mails of praise.
26/04/2013 12:15

Mr Cool to AdamW (#6)

AdamW – I wouldn’t say I necessarily disagree with the points made above – they all have merits, but the simplest advice for how to behave in all situations is summed up in one simple phrase – “behave to others as you would have them behave to you”.

In this situation that probably means don’t do anything too formal or over the top that it might embarrass your colleagues, or make them feel that you are being condescending (a rookie praising a veteran). But, FFS, surely no one can be offended if you walk up a say, “It’s my last day tomorrow, thanks for your help, you’ve really made me feel welcome, and I appreciate all the time you took to help me with XYZ”. If you know the manager and interact with him/her daily then include them in the process. If not, don’t.

Frankly if anyone is so emotionally retarded as to be offended, and if that is the enduring company spirit...Jeez...I’d be running for the hills.

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#8 RE: Sending e-mails of praise.
26/04/2013 12:19

Mr Cool to Mr Cool (#7)

Oh and also, for what its worth, I'd rather have someone like you on my team (natural tendency to say thanks and then learn to tone it down) than some c*ck with his head up his a*se.

No shortage of them...

Keep trusting your instincts.

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#9 RE: Sending e-mails of praise.
26/04/2013 12:38

marsday to Mr Cool (#8)

Dont trust your instincts. They are not a categorical imperative. Your instinct today could be to send group hug emails to colleagues. Tomorrow it could be to go postal with a semi-automatic weapon in the local Aldi.

Trust in this forum. We are omniscient.

Or maybe just say thank you in person rather than an email?

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