thanking your team

Take a moment and think about who you worked with to create your last project—whether it was an article, a digital newsletter, or a print publication. If you are a writer or editor, you worked with story sources, a graphic designer, and maybe a technical support person. If you are a graphic designer, you worked with an editor and/or writer. If you are a publisher, you may have worked with a whole team. Even for those of you who work alone and take on many roles, perhaps your family or friends gave you encouragement or support on the project.

Before you dive into your next project, take time to thank the people who make your work possible. Showing gratitude for the contributions of others in your work can build a stronger team and encourage everyone that their role, however small or large, is important.

Specific Praise

While taking a moment to show gratitude is simple, the most effective thanks you can offer is specific to the person. You can send a generic email to the team saying, “Thanks to everyone for their work on the May issue of the newsletter.” This does provide a sense of gratitude. But a much more effective way to praise people is to be specific. Then the people you work with will know that you notice the particular effort they put into a project.

Here are some examples of more specific praise that affirms and encourages people:

  • For a story source you interviewed: “Thanks so much for your honesty in sharing with me. I appreciate how you were willing to go deeper in answering my questions and it makes the article a stronger reflection of your ministry.”
  • For a graphic designer: “I know we made some decisions to change a page late in the process. I appreciate how you were willing to put energy into getting to a quality result, even with the extra work.”
  • For a writer: “I appreciate how you were timely in your responses to the edits that we made in your article. Your willingness to take on revisions resulted in a stronger story for our audience. Thanks for that!”
  • For an editor (from a designer): “Thanks for working to keep the word counts on the articles at our targets for each section. It helps provide room for the design so that the layout package draws people in to read the great articles.”

Of course, honest praise is important. If a project didn’t go well or there were serious problems, just saying thanks can sound insincere. Offering thanks to your team can be one part of an evaluation process that you go through with each project. Such an evaluation would include what worked well, what could be improved for next time, and specific recommendations for areas of difficulty.

Check out these additional blogs for more inspiration:

by Carla Foote, Fine Print Editorial

Photo by Eye for Ebony on Unsplash

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