When we started using Kudo Cards I thought „Hey, sounds like a good idea! Let’s try it!“. After using the cards for a while, I really think it is a great idea, and now I want to share my thoughts with you why I am so convinced.
First of all, it is a really good feeling receiving a Kudo Card. It tells me that someone appreciates what I am doing. It is direct and unfiltered feedback from my colleagues telling me that they like my actions. It feels good and makes work more fun. Receiving these cards opens up a whole new positive feedback loop that encourages me to carry on and do stuff that is helpful for others and is in line with our goals.
As it turns out giving Kudo Cards is just as much fun and satisfying as receiving them. If I write a Kudo Card for someone I know that I will make this person happier. This is an extremely rewarding feeling. To me it is a very easy way to express gratitude to others, and to tell them that I really appreciate what they do – something that is not to be taken for granted. Based on the reactions I am observing I am convinced that others feel the same as me.
But wait a minute! What if I do not receive any Kudo Cards? Wouldn’t that make me feel bad? Well, on second thought the missing card is not the problem. On the contrary – it provides transparency that something is amiss. Either my perception of what I am doing for the team differs from that of the team, or I am working on topics that are not in focus for the team. Either way it is time to adapt something – an adaptation made possible through the transparency and inspection enabled through the Kudo Cards (or the lack of them)! So not receiving cards would also a be good thing as it would clearly show a need for clarification or more information about what I am doing.
What is even more interesting to me is that it is not only a personal thing, it also has a positive effect on our team and company. It influences the way we work together in a positive way. First of all it raises the team spirit and brings people closer together. This helps to build trust and openness. We give and receive timely feedback from people who we would not normally reach directly without Kudo Cards. Since the cards are out in the open for everyone to see it gives me the feeling of doing something valuable for others and the company. Further still it is an instrument that can be easily used by people who on one hand would normally shy away from saying something, or others who think that praise is not that important – the barrier to doing so is reduced or removed altogether. After receiving some Kudo Cards it’s amazing how almost everyone starts giving cards as well, and learns that giving positive feedback is fun and feels good. In this way Kudo Cards help to enhance our feedback culture and to make it normal to give and receive positive feedback on an ongoing basis. To me that’s a great achievement for such a simple instrument!
When I think about why I like to come to work every morning Kudo Cards have provided an important aspect on why it is fun and feels good to work in my company.
Try it out and increase your own and your team’s happiness as well! 🙂