From Kevin’s Desk: Thank You! (03/16/18)

Dear Colleagues:

Happy Friday!

This week the B&F Leadership Forum spent a half day with leadership consultant and bestselling author Adrian Gostick. He talked with us about several aspects of positive leadership, but one that stood out to me is the importance of recognizing team members for their work. In my own career, I’ve worked for a lot of different leaders with dramatically different styles. Some made me feel that my work mattered – not just to the company, but to them personally. Others had a more no-nonsense, dictatorial style (think of the old Far Side cartoon: “floggings will continue until morale improves.” Yikes!). I can tell you, unequivocally, that I am more motivated by leaders who care. It’s one reason I am so passionate about making B&F a more positive work environment – I want each of you to know how much you matter!

This week I also had the pleasure of meeting with several colleagues on the hospital maintenance team. Talk about work that matters! This group plays an essential role in making sure that our hospitals are safe and ready for Michigan Medicine’s more than two million patient visits each year. At the staff meeting I attended the team leader started the discussion by publicly recognizing several staff for going above and beyond for a customer or a colleague. Not only was I impressed by the wonderful accomplishments of this team, I was thrilled to see their efforts acknowledged in this way. A great team with great leadership, a winning combination — you guys ROCK!

While formal recognition programs are terrific, one thing we can all do to make a positive impact is to just say “thank you”. If a colleague helps you out or goes the extra mile to make sure a customer has what they need, thank them – in person, or even better, take a minute to write someone a thank you note. Our own Laurita Thomas doesn’t go to sleep at night without writing at least one thank you note to someone, and it’s a commitment I really admire. And Laurita is one of the busiest people I know, so if she can do it, we all can!

Each of you plays a critical role in making this university great, and I couldn’t be more grateful for all you do. Go Blue!

With much appreciation and gratitude,