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Management and Leadership in Nonprofits

Management and Leadership in Nonprofits


How Do You Want to Be Thanked?

Oct 02, 2018
By: Tammy T. Jelinek

Once every year or so, my team members are asked to share how they want to receive appreciation — specifically non-compensation. They often have varied answers. And over the years it’s been great information to share with other team members and other leaders to really personalize the “thank you” for them. 

This time one of them asked me to share how I want to be appreciated too.

I was taken aback. Not because this person asked; she is a great leader and very involved in team morale. But it honestly took me time to answer because as a leader I just assumed that being appreciated by those on the team sort of goes away. If I do something well, it’s expected because I am a leader. If I make someone happy with a decision, it’s expected because I am a leader. If I attain a business goal, it’s expected because I am a leader. You get the picture. As leaders we are expected to do the job, make the decisions, achieve the goals. Positive or negative, it is just a part of the role.

It was eye opening to explore what thank you means to me. Receiving a thank-you that lets me know how something I did that impacted someone was high on the list. Thank you meant being invited to play and have fun with the team, to hear their positives and to be a part of celebrating their successes — and if that celebration comes with a cupcake, all the better!

Ask your team how they individually would like to be thanked. Share that with others. And maybe even share with the team how you would like to receive earned appreciation.

Wishing you a great day, and remember:  Lead with legacy.


Tammy Jelinek has over 20 years of experience in working in and with fabulous organizations. This blog will explore what it’s like for her to lead as a woman, as a GenXer, and as a person who truly wants to lead with legacy—meaning she wants to walk her talk. Tammy has presented training nationally across the United States, built businesses, coached amazing people and built a career in the squiggliest path known to man…or in this case, woman. She has a passion for being curious, helping people and making actions happen.

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Tammy T. Jelinek, MBA
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