Although the Thanksgiving holiday is over, we can continue to practice thankfulness as we finish the year. We began our discussion on reflection and last week emphasized specific actions that you can take to demonstrate thankfulness to individuals. When we lead coalitions, we have opportunities to be thankful to individuals as well as to groups and organizations. Although the way we demonstrate thankfulness may be different, the thankfulness intention is still incredibly important. Join me this week for three ways to practice thankfulness that can apply to individuals, groups or organizations.
When we work with coalitions, sometimes we struggle with overwhelming a document or page with all of the people or groups who have contributed to the work. However, one of the most important ways to say “thank you” is to specifically acknowledge the person or organization who gave specific contributions. In most projects, there are a few people who do most of the work. Including them by name or organization in the document, resource or toolkit is a wonderful way to show thankfulness to them. You can also include them in the announcement related to the product or deliverable. Depending upon the specific resource, another wonderful way to give credit is to include their logo. In these situations, giving credit goes a long way to showing thankfulness and building the relationship. Alternatively, by not giving credit, this can damage relationships and interest working with the coalition or group in the future.
Give a gift
Although our coalitions may not have significant resources to provide monetary support or even gifts, we may be able to partner with other groups who can help with providing a gift as a way to demonstrate thankfulness. The type of gift depends upon the person or group and what will demonstrate thankfulness. For some, a small gift card to a local coffee shop would be a wonderful gift. For others, providing resources for printing or covering the cost of travel would be another kind of thank you gift. Work with your coalition to see who you may want to thank and be creative with the types of gifts you give. I remember participating in a meeting and a lung cancer survivor gave me the gift of a ribbon/pin that had diamond-like gems in it as a thank you for participating. I still enjoy, wear and appreciate that gift!
In our busy schedules, one of the best thank you gifts to our coalition members or partners is the gift of time. You can give them time to meet with you for 30 minutes to hear about what is important to them/their organization or you can give them time on the next meeting agenda. As you plan your calendar and your ideal week, consider blocking some time on your calendar each month that you can offer to partners as a thank you for their contribution and an opportunity to listen and learn from them.
As you think about these three ways to say thank you, which one will you try in the next couple of weeks?
One of the concepts that is connected to thankfulness is Emotional Intelligence. Download my free resource on Emotional Intelligence and Coalition Building!