GratiTuesday: Bravo!

A heart shaped trinket with the words Thanks written on it. The trinket is attached to a padlock that is attached to a red fence.
Photo by Marcus Wu00f6ckel on

At my $dayjob, we have a Bravo program that’s meant for employees to nominate each other for work we’re doing to contribute to the success of our teams, and ultimately, our company. There are three levels:

  • An Applause award lets us give each other a round of applause for a job well done or to thank each other for kind gestures.
  • An Ovation award is a step higher when you want to do more than just send a round of Applause.  and we get a voucher for a gift card of our choice.
  • An Encore is for leaders to recognize their team members with a monetary reward (like expensing a lunch, or a larger gift card value).

Each level has a certificate that says who nominated you, and what corporate values they think you have demonstrated to earn the award. It’s a nice morale boost because we get to nominate our peers for two of the three levels. I have an email folder where I keep the certificates so that I can go back, when I’m on the pointy end of a day full of suck or suffering through a particularly virulent episode of Imposter Syndrome. And you know, gratitude is never bad.

Then, this morning, a friend (who’s a team lead) asked me if I thought writing Kudos (a list of things our team has accomplished so we can celebrate our successes) and Bravos qualified as something she should record specifically against our productivity metrics. I thought about it and said “If it takes longer than a half hour in a week, it seems legit”.

I started off 2021 with a goal of submitting a Bravo every week. I didn’t want them to just be reduced to “Yay, you do what your job description requires!” They’re supposed to be for folks who go beyond that. And boy howdy, I know lots of people who do that. I wanted to share with my team and cross-collaborative teams that I work with how much I appreciate working with them, or how I notice the good work they’re doing to benefit the team/department/company. But it sometimes feels a little weird to say ‘Yeah, I saw what you did there. Good on ‘ya.” Especially if you know the person is going to demure or not see it as a big deal. People who are glad to help sometimes feel uncomfortable being called out because they don’t do it for the glory. But it can also be a huge deal. Something that didn’t feel like a big deal to you (As the doer/helper) might be the thing that helped someone get to their kid’s hockey game, or made them feel more confident on a terrible day. So yeah, you never know.

But I digress.

So my grand Bravo plan lasted about 10 weeks, and then it became more sporadic. I still did it (and do it) randomly, but it was more adhoc – not piggybacked onto a few other housekeeping things I did on Monday morning every week, like clockwork.

That said a few things to me – I wasn’t noticing what people were doing because I had started introverting (Thanks, Covid Lockdown), and as a result I wasn’t collaborating as much because I the extrovert was either overwhelmed or atrophying. Certainly not a good frame of mind. So, I’m going to widen the net somewhat, and cut myself some slack at the same time. Certainly, gratitude is one of my personal guiding principles – time to walk the walk.

So here we go – today we start the (maybe? Hopefully!) weekly practice of Grati-Tuesday.

Today I’m thankful for:

  • Cooler temperatures and open windows
  • The Thundershirt that keeps King Louie calmer during the (seems like daily) thunderstorms.
  • The I’m Proud boxes – 4 green boxes full of things Child was proud of throughout his academic (and hockey and cadet) life.
  • Apri-plums, which are my current favourite franken-fruit.
  • Briogeo Scalp Revival – the not-cheap scalp shampoo/mask/soothing drops set that’s helping with the ferocious itchy scalp I’ve had for months and months and months.
  • The Kudos email folder that I have with Bravos that people have sent to me.

Extra Credit:

Mindfulness: #Gratituesday and the Practice of Gratitude

One thought on “GratiTuesday: Bravo!

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