Do you speak the same love language as your staff members? Before you think that we might be getting into dangerous territory here, Dr. Gary Chapman wrote a bestseller called The 5 Love Languages. Chapman’s research helped categorize ways that people feel and express love. While one partner in a relationship might feel loved when spending quality time together the other might appreciate acts of service, such as unexpectedly doing the dishes. If you only give in ways that you like to receive love, your partner might not feel appreciated, even if you are trying to express your love.
The same theories hold true at work and Gary Chapman applied his research to work-based relationships in The 5 Languages of Appreciation in the Workplace. The five languages are: 1) Words of Affirmation, 2) Quality Time, 3) Receiving Gifts, 4) Acts of Service, and 5) Physical Touch.
Please visit the 5 Love Languages Assessment for more detail and a survey you and your staff can take. How might you vary the ways you show appreciation based on staff preferences? How might you use each of these languages throughout the year or during Teacher Appreciation week? How might you help your staff use these with their students, team members, or with the important people in their life outside of work?