Compliments do wonders for our sense of hearing
Mark Twain once said, “I could live for two months on one good compliment.”
We all love to receive compliments. They make everyone feel better. Turns out studies show that compliments can also help people perform better.
In a study published in PLoS One, researchers at the National Institute for Physiological Sciences at the University of Tokyo, recruited 48 adults to perform a task that required them to tap items on a keyboard in a specific pattern. Then the adults were split into three groups. One group received personalized, individual compliments from one of the administrators of the study. Another group was forced to watch as other people received compliments. The third group was simply meant to evaluate how they did, as participants, on the test.
When the participants returned to the testing facility the next day, all of the participants were asked to perform the finger test once again. The group that received personalized compliments performed better on the test that day than either of the other groups. Researchers believe that the compliments made them perform better.
According to their study, compliments activate the same region of the brain – the striatum – as cash does, and both encourage people to perform better. In other words, compliments may not buy your groceries, but they sure help.
Norihiro Sadata, one of the study authors, said, “To the brain, receiving a compliment is as much a social reward as being rewarded money. We’ve been able to find scientific proof that a person performs better when they receive a social reward after completing an exercise. There seems to be scientific validity behind the message ‘praise to encourage improvement.’”
Compliments are a powerful social and work-related tool. If you want to make a positive impression at work, be generous with compliments. Show appreciation to co-workers (and even your boss) for their good work. When giving compliments, the more specific the better. This shows you notice the little things.
Compliments not only reassure people, they create positive energy, strengthen relationships and build trust. They are a sign of respect.
You don’t need to be an expert at giving compliments. You just need to be sincere and genuine. Many people know how to flatter, few know how to praise. Sincere praise reassures individuals. It helps them neutralize doubts they have about themselves. Just remember, the sweetest of all sounds is praise. Silent gratitude isn’t very much use to anyone.
At MackayMitchell Envelope Company, we are intensely grateful for customer referrals, which we consider to be the ultimate compliment. When customers are happy with our service and products, there is no better validation than for them to tell their friends.