October 15: Offering Heartfelt Praise

Three tips on how to effectively compliment someone.

Source: TED
Published: January 2019

Offering Heartfelt Praise

It only takes a bit more effort to turn a vague comment into the kind of praise that could make someone’s day, says Cheryl Ferguson, a high school music educator in Winnipeg, Canada. Here are the three basic components of every effective compliment.

  1. Use their name — indicate that the other person is worth your time and worth knowing.

  2. Be specific — make your compliment as specific as possible. There’s a world of difference between “good job on the memo” and “your third paragraph tied your initiative to the goals of the team and made it easier for me to see the bigger picture.”

  3. Try not to praise and run — follow up your compliment with a question, such as “what part of the memo did you learn the most writing?” or “what surprised you about the findings?”


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