How To Give Better Compliments At Work

Boost Morale with Great Compliments


Confidence Boost

Master genuine praise to feel empowered, elevating team morale and personal confidence

Build Trust

Craft specific, heartfelt compliments to build trust and stronger, more positive relationships.

Skill Enhancement

Enhance personal and professional relationships with improved emotional intelligence and communication.

Refine your communication skills by learning to harness your emotional intelligence with one of the UK's most acclaimed management training courses.

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More Than Just A Course Of Lectures

What gets in the way of developing and holding on to new communication skills are old habits of thinking and speaking. Even if the advice is very good the reason why it rarely sticks are the mental habits people inevitably revert to, especially under pressure.

Unlearning those old habits and internalising a more effective and lasting approach to communication needs more than a short course of lectures on how to do it.

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What makes this training stand out is the exceptional support through one-to-one coaching sessions and continuous feedback. Changing behaviour is not an easy task as old habits are hard to break.

With a 40-year track record we can help you cultivate practical skills, and build your confidence to so you can successfully navigate real-world challenges, ensuring lasting behavioural improvements.


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Course Summary

Training Objectives

Struggling to get your compliments right at work? A study found that sincere praise can dramatically boost a team's morale. This training course will equip you with tips on crafting genuine, impactful compliments for your colleagues and boss. It might help you deliver better quality feedback that might just transform your workplace relationships!

  • Sincere and specific compliments boost morale, motivation, and productivity at work. They help build strong teams.
  • Good compliments are true, focus on real achievements or skills, and matter to the person receiving them.
  • Avoid fake praise and comments on appearance as they can harm workplace relationships.
  • Saying "thank you" when you get a compliment shows appreciation and strengthens connections at work.

Develop Your Emotional Intelligence

You will learn a set of powerful emotional intelligence communication techniques so that you can manage difficult conversations, handle challenging situations, build relationships and set firm boundaries.

Transferable Skills

The goal of this training is to equip you with the tools you need to build strong, lasting relationships in your professional life, although because these skills are so transferable many clients report vast improvements in their personal relationships as well.

Develop Skills

This is a skills development rather than just a theoretical programme, so the emphasis throughout will be on you taking turn after turn, practising your skills, while receiving feedback and coaching about your effect on others.

Repeated Practice and Feedback

In your coaching sessions you will be helped to practise dealing with the kinds of situation you find challenging, again and again, until you are confident you can do it successfully.

Video Analysis

We'll combine practical, hands-on experience with video replay and analysis and discussion of the principles involved to help you gain both skills and understanding. Special attention is paid to your individual training needs, so you can practise your skills in real-life situations that you have to handle at work.

Sustained Change

That's why as well as your place in a small group, this training includes a generous amount of private and confidential one-to-one coaching sessions online, spread over several months, ensuring an exceptional level of support. This will ensure the changes you make are sustained over a longer period of time and any obstacles are overcome. Choose between online training available worldwide, or in-person face-to-face courses in the UK.

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People who feel understood are more receptive

Why Giving Compliments is Important in the Workplace

Giving compliments at work makes everyone feel good and work better. It builds a happy team that works well together.

Boosts morale and motivation

Compliments at work can really lift people's spirits and push them to do even better. Imagine finishing a tough task and then hearing someone say, “Great job, I’m impressed!” It makes you feel valued and proud of your work.

This positive feedback motivates employees to keep up the good effort, knowing their hard work doesn't go unnoticed.

Creating an environment where compliments are common helps build a motivated team. Everyone likes feeling appreciated for their contributions. When managers and coworkers openly praise each other’s efforts, it sets off a chain reaction of optimism.

This vibe encourages everyone to put in their best, making the workplace lively and full of energy.

Encourages positive relationships

Boosting morale and motivation sets the stage for even better things, like building stronger bonds among coworkers. Positive relationships at work matter a lot. They make everyone feel happy and connected.

Compliments play a big part in this. Telling someone they did great can open doors to chats that might not have happened before. It shows we see each other's hard work and care.

These small acts of praising build trust too. Trust makes teams work better together. People start to support each other more, share ideas freely, and solve problems together with ease.

This all starts with simple words of appreciation shared between people at work.

Increases productivity and teamwork

Giving compliments can really help people work better together. It makes everyone feel valued and part of a team. When someone says you've done a good job, it encourages you to keep up the good work.

This means more gets done in less time.

Teams that support each other with kind words tend to solve problems faster. They understand each other's strengths and use them well. Happy teams also share their wins, which brings them closer together.

So, saying nice things at work isn't just about being polite - it's a smart way to get more done and build stronger teams.

She now feels more confident in tackling people

What Makes a Good Compliment?

A good compliment comes from the heart and hits just right. It's about showing you've paid attention and you value someone's work or character.

Offering sincere praise

Being sincere means your words come from the heart. You really mean what you say. This makes your compliment more special to the person who hears it. They feel seen and valued because you took time to notice their efforts or skills.

Sincerity shines through when you speak truthfully about how someone's action impressed you. Maybe they solved a big problem or helped a team member in need. Tell them exactly what you admired, using clear, honest words.

This builds trust and shows that your compliments are not just empty words.


WWe also find that specificity truly makes compliments stand out. It's about making sure your praise hits home by pointing to something very particular.

You might say, "Your report was so detailed – it cleared up all my questions, I’m grateful.” This way, you're not just saying a good job was done; you're highlighting exactly what made it excellent.

Specific compliments show you've really noticed someone's hard work or unique skill.

This approach serves two purposes. First, it lets people know exactly what they did well, encouraging them to keep up the great work. Second, it proves that you pay attention and value their contributions at a deeper level than just surface achievements.

So next time you want to make someone feel special at work, remember - the more specific, the better!


A good compliment has to be about something that matters. This means understanding what is important at work. Sincerity and specificity play big roles, but relevance ties it all together.

It's about seeing how someone's actions fit into understanding the bigger picture.

Making sure a compliment connects with real achievements or qualities can turn simple words into powerful tools. It shows you see the hard work behind results and respect the effort put in.

That kind of recognition makes people feel truly valued and supports a positive atmosphere at work.

Are you helping them think for themselves?

When to Give Compliments at Work

The best time to give compliments at work is when you see someone do something amazing—like finishing a tough project, showing off a skill, or welcoming a new team member. Keep reading to find out how to make your colleagues feel great with just the right words!

After a job well done

A job well done deserves recognition. Tell your coworker exactly what they did right. Maybe their presentation was top-notch or their report was detailed and clear. This makes them feel valued and shows you pay attention to their efforts.

Giving compliments after success boosts confidence. It encourages people to keep up the good work. Everyone likes knowing their hard work doesn’t go unnoticed. So, next time a team member nails a task, let them know.

It strengthens the team and keeps spirits high.

When someone displays a skill

Seeing a coworker show off a skill is the perfect time to offer praise. It could be something like solving a tough problem or helping others in a new way. Tell them exactly what they did well.

This kind of compliment makes their talent stand out and shows you really see their hard work. It feels good for them and can make your workplace more positive.

Next up, note that welcoming a new team member also gives you a great chance to start on the right foot with compliments..

When a new team member joins

A new person joining the team is a great time for compliments. It helps them feel welcomed and valued right from the start. Tell them you are happy to have them on board. Point out something positive - maybe their enthusiasm or a skill they bring to the team.

This makes a strong first impression and builds confidence.

Giving such compliments also shows that you pay attention and care about team dynamics. It encourages others to welcome the newcomer too, setting up a friendly work environment from day one.

Keep it sincere and specific, focusing on what really stands out about them or what they could contribute to the company's goals.

Assertiveness, Listening Skills and Emotional Intelligence Training

Types of Compliments for Coworkers

Giving compliments at work helps everyone feel good. It shows we see and value what others do.

For a job well done

Praising someone for their hard work shines a light on their effort and dedication. Say something like, “I’m really pleased, because your attention to detail really made our project stand out,“ This not only shows you noticed their effort but also values it.

Such nods to hard work encourage more of the same behaviour.

It feels good to hear, "Well done," especially after pouring heart and soul into a task. Specific praise helps too. Mentioning exactly what was so great – maybe their creativity or how they solved a tough problem – makes the compliment hit home harder.

It's about letting them know that what they do matters and is seen.

On specific skills

Compliments on specific skills make a big difference. They tell your coworker you see their hard work and value what they do. It's like saying, "I noticed how good you are at solving problems, what a relief” or "Your way with words saved our team today, I’m grateful.” These kinds of compliments show you're paying attention.

They feel more personal and can boost confidence.

Focus on what someone does really well. Maybe they're great at organising events or making everyone feel included in meetings. Tell them! This doesn't just make them happy; it encourages them to keep doing a great job.

Plus, it makes the whole workplace nicer for everyone.

For being a good teammate

Cheering on your teammates shows you see and value their hard work. It’s about noticing the little things they do that keep the team moving smoothly. Maybe they always have a positive attitude, or perhaps they're great at helping others when things get tough.

A simple "Thanks for always being there to lend a hand, it’s so helpful to know you’ve got our back”, can mean a lot. This not only boosts their confidence but strengthens the bonds within the team.

Learn how to be both firm and fair

Compliments for Your Boss

Showing appreciation to your boss can make a big difference. It's about finding the right moment and words to say thanks for their support and guidance.

On their leadership skills

Praising your boss for their leadership skills shows you see and value their efforts to guide the team. Use words that highlight their ability to inspire, make decisions, and support everyone.

For example, you might say, "Your guidance on the recent project helped us stay focused and achieve our goals, I’m grateful.” This type of compliment is specific and sincere. It reflects on actual contributions they've made.

Next up, let's talk about how to compliment them for making a positive impact.

For making a positive impact

After acknowledging their leadership skills, it's equally important to highlight how your boss makes a positive impact. This can be about changes they've made that better the workplace or initiatives they've started which help the team.

Telling your boss that their efforts have led to real benefits shows them their work matters.

Your words can reflect on big or small actions - everything counts. For example, say something like, "Your decision to implement weekly feedback sessions has really built our team's confidence, I’m pleased.” It tells them clearly what they did and how it improved things.

Such compliments not only boost morale but also encourage continued good leadership and innovation.

For their support and guidance

Bosses play a big role in our work lives. A compliment for their support and guidance shows we see and value their efforts. Saying thanks for how they lead or help can boost their day too! It makes the workplace better for everyone.

Next, let's look at using emotional intelligence to give compliments at work..

How to Give Compliments at Work using Emotional Intelligence

Using emotional intelligence to give compliments means thinking about how the other person will feel. This makes your compliment more special.

Consider the recipient

Knowing your audience makes all the difference. Each person at work has their own likes, goals, and challenges. A compliment that hits the mark takes these into account. Say a teammate just finished a big project.

Tell them specifically the effect they had you on you, personally can make an enormous difference to how sincere you sound, e.g. what you like, admire or respect about their work - maybe their creativity or how they solved problems. This shows you really see their efforts.

Make it personal

Making compliments personal means you've paid attention. It shows you see the hard work or skill someone brings to the table. Say a teammate always makes sure meetings run smoothly.

You could tell them, "Your ability to keep our meetings on track helps us all stay focused and productive.  I’m personally grateful we’ve got you on the team.” This way, you're not just saying something nice. You're pointing out how their specific action benefits everyone.

Listening plays a big part too. If a coworker mentions they've been trying to improve their presentation skills, and then they nail it, highlight that effort. Tell them, “I pleased to see how confidently you presented today; your practice really paid off!" This approach makes your compliment feel genuine because it connects with their personal goals and efforts.

Listen intently

After making your compliments personal, the next step is to listen intently. This means paying close attention to how the other person responds. By doing this, you show that you care about their feelings and thoughts.

It's not just about saying nice things; it's also about being a good listener.

Listening well helps you understand what matters most to your coworkers or boss. This can guide you in giving even more meaningful compliments in the future. Plus, by listening, you might learn new things that can help make your work life better too.

People used to be scared of him - no longer

Common Mistakes to Avoid When Giving Compliments

When giving compliments, make sure they are true and from the heart. Avoid saying things that sound fake or as if you are talking down to someone.

Being insincere

Giving fake praise can do more harm than help. People usually know when you're not being honest. If your words don't match what you truly feel, they lose their power. Compliments should come from the heart.

They make a big difference when they're genuine.

If someone catches you giving false compliments, it could hurt your reputation at work. Trust and respect are key in any workplace. Keep them strong by always being sincere with your words.

Using patronising language

Avoid speaking down to people at work. This means not using words or a tone that make you sound better than them. Such language can hurt feelings and bring down team spirit. Instead, choose words that show respect and value for your coworkers' contributions.

It's also key to watch how you talk about someone's work or ideas. What you might think of as helpful advice could come across as belittling if not delivered right. Always aim for a positive impact, focusing on building up rather than breaking down confidence.

Commenting on someone’s looks

Talking about someone's looks at work can be tricky. It’s easy to slip into a place where your words could upset others, even if you mean well. Always think before speaking about appearances.

Compliments on work-related skills or achievements are safer and often appreciated more.

Focusing on how people do their jobs rather than how they look creates a positive environment. Everyone feels valued for what they bring to the team, not for their personal style or appearance.

This approach helps build stronger relationships among colleagues, making everyone feel respected and part of the group.


How aware are you of your effect on others?

How to Receive Compliments

Getting compliments feels great, right? Just say "thank you" and share what the kind words mean to you.

Say "thank you"

Saying "thank you" is crucial. It shows you heard and valued the compliment. It takes a moment but means a lot. Sharing how it made you feel adds depth to your response.

Keep it simple, yet genuine. A quick "thank you" can brighten someone's day just as their words did for yours. This small gesture strengthens bonds at work, making everyone feel appreciated and connected.

Share how the compliment made a difference

After saying "thank you", take a moment to think about how the compliment has changed things for you. It might make your day better or give you more confidence. Tell the person who complimented you what their words meant.

Maybe it made you feel proud of your work or helped you see your own skills in a new light.

Sharing this can make the person giving the compliment feel good too. They see their words have real power. This can lead to a stronger bond between colleagues and create an even more positive atmosphere at work.

It shows that compliments are not just nice words but tools that help us grow and connect with each other in meaningful ways.


Learn how to be soft on the person yet tough on the issue

How To Give Better Compliments At Work - Conclusion

Giving better compliments at work makes a big difference. It's about being honest, clear, and kind. When you notice someone doing well, tell them exactly what they did right. Make sure your words match how you feel.

This way, everyone feels good and works better together. So, try it out - a few kind words can change the day!

Stand up for your ideas and also respect theirs

How To Give Better Compliments At Work - FAQs

1. What makes a compliment at work not sound patronising?

To avoid sounding patronising, focus on being sincere and specific about what you're complimenting. Mention the behaviour or result, rather than just saying something general.

2. How can I use verbs and nouns to make my compliments better?

Use a combination of verbs and nouns to clearly express what impressed you... For instance, instead of just saying "good job," try "Your analysis really clarified our next steps."

3. Is it important to consider the context when giving compliments?

Absolutely! The context matters a lot. Make sure your compliment fits the situation and doesn't come off as out of place or forced.

4. Can giving compliments be part of effective communication at work?

Yes, indeed! Giving thoughtful compliments can improve relationships and motivate colleagues, making it an essential part of good workplace communication.

5. Why should I avoid using too many general terms when complimenting someone?

Using too many general terms can make your compliment seem insincere... Be specific about what you appreciated to convey genuine admiration.

6. How do subject complements fit into giving compliments in the workplace?

Subject complements complete sentences by describing or identifying the subject after linking verbs... So, when praising someone's work, using them effectively can serve to add clarity—like saying "Your presentation was insightful."

7. How can I use subject complements effectively in giving compliments without sounding patronizing?

When giving compliments, the use of subject complements can significantly enhance the meaning and impact of your expressions. A subject complement is a noun, noun phrase, or adjective that follows a linking verb (often a form of the verb "to be") and refers back to the subject of the sentence, providing more information about it. For example, in the sentence "Your ideas are innovative," "innovative" serves as a subject complement that describes "your ideas." To avoid sounding patronizing, it's crucial to choose expressions that feel genuine and are directly related to the person's actions or qualities. Note that most people can discern the sincerity behind a compliment, so emphasizing aspects that genuinely impress you can prevent your commendation from sounding insincere. Additionally, employing a varied vocabulary and avoiding overused phrases can also help in complementing without coming across as patronizing. Remember, the goal is to convey appreciation in a manner that uplifts and validates, where the subject complement meaning aligns closely with the person's behavior or achievement, thus making your commendation sound more sincere and thoughtful.

8. How can object complements be used to give compliments that resonate well with the recipient?

Object complements are words or phrases that follow and modify the direct object of a sentence and are essential in providing a full object complement" to the object. They usually come after the main verb and direct object, adding detail or giving more information about the state of the object. For instance, in the sentence "We consider your leadership inspiring," "inspiring" acts as an object complement, adding depth to the direct object "your leadership." Using object complements in compliments allows you to be more specific about what you appreciate, thus avoiding generic praise that might fail to resonate. It's vital to select object complements that accurately reflect the recipient's qualities or achievements to ensure the compliment does not sound patronizing. The key is to focus on specific behaviors or outcomes that you find admirable and use expressions that genuinely express your sentiment. This approach ensures that your compliments are meaningful and tailored to the individual, reinforcing positive behavior and contributing to a supportive environment, whether in personal or professional settings, like praising a colleague or manager for their contributions.

9. How can I use "complement nouns" and "term complements" effectively in my verb compliments?

Utilising "complement nouns" and "term complements" in your compliments can add a layer of specificity and thoughtfulness that most people find genuinely flattering. A "complement noun" refers to a noun or noun phrase that serves to complete the meaning of the predicate in a sentence, providing detailed information about the subject or object. For example, in the expression "Your work as a manager is invaluable," the complement of "invaluable" serves as a term complement that enriches the meaning conveyed by the complement noun "work."

When aiming to complement someone without sounding patronising, it's crucial to select words that accurately reflect their contributions or qualities. This approach ensures that your compliments are perceived as sincere and meaningful. For instance, instead of making a general statement, you could say, "Your leadership in this company has been a guiding post for the entire team," where the word "guiding post" functions as a complement noun that highlights the specific role and impact of the individual within the organisation.

It's generally beneficial to incorporate a bit of context or explanation into your compliments. This method not only emphasises your appreciation but also makes the recipient feel genuinely valued. For example, using a term or complementing or alongside a preposition can further clarify your point, as in "Your creativity in solving problems is, without a doubt, exceptional."

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