Those who went ahead made it possible for those who followed. The trail blazed and obstacles removed build a passable lane for those of us who come later. I am grateful for their work.
If we wait until the last moment to share our appreciation we might miss the opportunity to germinate generosity. Delaying gratitude until the gift is revealed is a risky proposition. If we have built trust and a connection, implied thanks might be sufficient but silence can easily be misconstrued and disappointment.
How might waiting until the final meeting of a board member’s term to say generous things change the course of their service? How might periodic illustrations of impact offer encouragement and refuel our collective purpose?
What is the right cadence for celebration and appreciation? What has worked well for your enterprise? What has been less ideal?
What is something you are grateful for every decade of your life (e.g. age 0-10, 11-20, 21-30, etc)? Simon Sinek facilitated this moment with Omar Brownson at the end of his recent podcast and it was remarkable. It is a new icebreaker that I am adding to my tool kit.
Victory speeches are great when accolades are bestowed upon us. It provides a platform for us to recognize those who have provided fuel for our journey. No matter the quest, we did not travel alone and relied on mentors and guides along the way. Too often we wait until victory is gained before we give the speech.
What if we gave a little bit of the victory speech everyday? What if we were generous with our compliments and recognition each time we assemble as a team? What if the victory speech is not remarkable to the tribe because they have memorized the refrain? How would we function if we were winning each and everyday?
Too many times the words of appreciation I intended to share with those who inspire depart with me, never being uttered and unable to reach their intended destination. Rather they float in a liminal space, unspoken but thought with gratitude. They come from remarkable moments shared. Generosity beyond comprehension. Acts of safety performed out-of-sight but with care. Good wishes and cheers of success. Recognition of places to return with those who would embrace a shared perception of beauty. Weight taken from shoulders. Paradigm shifts. Recommendations. Notes of gratitude. Clarity. Smiles. Inclusion.
Thank you is not the end point for the interaction. Being present and aligned with a greater purpose is perhaps the highest act of gratitude. We cheer not for reaching the finish line but rather the fleeting moments where our paths overlap and we share our journey together.
Thank you to all those who share their adventures and invited us to tag along. We went further together than we might have on our own.