ideas for achieving your appreciation goals in 2017

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January 1st brings a fresh start for diets, exercise plans, and the goal to express more appreciation. If you’re struggling with how to infuse more appreciation into the work year ahead, it’s time to set some goals. Just like there are benefits to eating a healthy diet, so there are benefits of expressing gratitude and appreciation. Like any good habit, all it takes is practice.

To get you started with a regular practice of appreciation, below we’ve provided ideas to achieve your daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly appreciation goals. Review these goals, pick a few that seem do-able, and commit to at least three or four practices that you’re going to implement and before you know it, you’ll meet (and exceed) your appreciation goals for 2017.


  • Start your day by appreciating one thing a colleague did the prior day. Send an email, stop by their workspace, or leave a note on their desk.
  • During a meeting or conversation, recognize someone for insight or advice they shared that resonated with you.
  • Establish a daily practice of recording (in a planner or online document) one thing you did well during the day.
  • If you need inspiration, you’re in luck! Every month, O.C. Tanner publishes a new Daily Appreciation calendar—make a point of checking it every day to get new ideas.


  • Consider the people on your team – is someone struggling? Look for a way you can somehow lend a hand to them this week.
  • Keep a tally for how often you say “thank you” to people and how it influences their behavior.
  • Each week, find a quote, picture, or symbol that will serve as a reminder to appreciate the small things.
  • Get fuel for your weekly appreciation delivered directly to your inbox via O.C. Tanner’s Weekly Appreciation Tip newsletter.


  • When people express their gratitude to you during the month, make sure you are acknowledging and appreciating their thoughtfulness.
  • Review the next 30 days; schedule and make a plan for how you’ll express kudos, depending on what fits for that occasion (e.g., eCards for day-to-day appreciation or symbolic awards for career anniversaries).
  • Pause and celebrate the goals you accomplished during the month.


  • If you’ve been keeping a personal appreciation journal, schedule time on your calendar to sit down, review, and appreciate the past 365 days.
  • The end of the year is the perfect time to express appreciation for your team with a group event or meeting during which colleagues can recognize one another for their positive contributions.
  • Talk with your team about the relevant role appreciation plays in your organizational culture, and communicate with them about the recognition tools and resources available to them.

Most importantly, don’t get in an appreciation rut! When you’ve mastered the practices above, try a few more and be sure you’re encouraging your colleagues to join you in adopting appreciation habits that will help create a great work environment.

By liz sheffield
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