When you’re trying to teach someone something—especially when you need them to learn it—don’t ever discount positive reinforcement. Sometimes even when the slightest thing goes right, your team will appreciate hearing “nice job.”
In the journalism business especially, we get hung up a lot on c’mon, c’mon, c’mon, gotta get things done, but taking a break every now and again to recognize people’s good work goes a long way toward putting everyone in a good mood and moving them along in the learning process.
A few caveats:
- Don’t gush over stuff;
- Don’t make a big (public) scene out of it;
- Don’t do it just to do it—be sincere.
Plain, simple, face-to-face: Nice job.