Giving and Receiving Compliments

What do you think about compliments in the workplace? A woman I know feels uncomfortable when she receives compliments. I LIKE to receive compliments from people -- they don't make me feel uncomfortable at all. What is your input?--iVillager


Dear iVillager:

I agree with you. Somehow, we need to grow into our own skin when it comes to accepting compliments, and that's not always easy.

Superfluous compliments are annoying and make others feel as though we're looking for something -- perhaps a favor, perhaps a return compliment. In the workplace, it's always dicey to compliment someone on personal things, such as appearance. Instead, stick to compliments on another's work.

Compliments are easier to accept when they are specific. For example, "Good job!" can sound insincere. But if you say, "The way you interpreted the sales projections at the staff meeting really made them clear and put them into perspective," then you are acknowledging the work and effort that went into the job.

Just to round this out, remember that the best way to reply to a compliment is simply to say, "Thank you." Never dispute the compliment, or you risk unintentionally insulting the giver by questioning his or her judgement.


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