Brian Bailey Preface to the Revised Edition

Thanks for Nothing

How often do we say thanks? I think showing appreciation is one of the true lost arts. Whether with your spouse, your staff and co-workers, or your Creator, you simply cannot say Thank You enough.

Why don't we? The most common excuses I see (and sometimes use) are: "He's just doing what he's supposed to," and "She's not doing anything more than I'm doing."

How often have you seen someone served in a restaurant or store and the customer refuses to even acknowledge his or her presence? The attitude seems to be, "I don't need to say thank you - that's his job. He's getting paid to do just that. Now, maybe if he had done that particularly well, it might be worth noticing, but certainly not for just doing what is expected."

This is particularly dangerous with spouses and employees (not that there's any similarity). In my house, we thank obsessively. "Thanks for dinner"..."Thanks for doing the laundry"..."Thanks for mowing the lawn." Not only does it show appreciation, it's also a subtle way of saying, "I don't just expect that you will do that. I don't take you for granted."

You'll often see this in organizations as well. Just because someone is paid to do a job doesn't mean you shouldn't appreciate their effort, results, unique contribution, creativity, or long hours. And when you are facing your own intense deadlines or overwhelming workload, that is an even better time to show your appreciation. "I'm not asking them to do anything I'm not already doing" is not a justification for failing to say, "Thanks for all you did to make this happen."

During the next week, take the time to say "Thank you!" at least five times each day. I promise it will have a huge impact on you and the people around you.