Etiquette of Acknowledging Others

  • 01 of 05

    Don't be an idea stealer

    woman giving presentation
    Give other people credit for their ideas and hard work. Luis Alvarez / Getty Images

    Almost everyone knows someone who likes to take credit for other people’s ideas, work, and accomplishments. Not only is that dishonest, it is rude and disrespectful. Follow proper etiquette and give credit where it is due. Idea stealers often get away with their antics a few times, but after a while most people recognize what is happening, and they stop trusting the culprit. If you praise the accomplishments of others with genuine enthusiasm, you will be considered a team player – always a...MORE positive in any business environment.

    There may be times when people give you credit that isn’t due, leaving you with a difficult decision. Don’t waste time wondering what to say or do. Quickly speak up and let everyone know that the idea belonged to someone else and that you support it. At work, your supervisor will see your ability to defer to others as a positive leadership trait that might benefit you during your employee evaluation. This might even earn you a promotion.

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  • 02 of 05

    Coworkers' Ideas

    coworkers brainstorming
    Be a team player and someone your coworkers know they can count on. Hero Images / Getty Images

    When you get together with coworkers to brainstorm ideas, take an extra second to jot down the name of the person who mentions each new concept. This make it easier to remember who said what, and as the idea is presented during a meeting, you can say, “The idea came from John, and the rest of us agreed that it was brilliant.” What this does is give credit to the originator of the idea and to the rest of the group for seeing its merit.

    Avoid the urge to pretend the idea was yours from the start or...MORE run the risk of becoming “that person” who can’t be trusted. Managers are smart people who can figure out the dynamics of their team. If you dishonestly take credit when you shouldn’t, your manager won’t be able to trust you with future projects.

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  • 03 of 05

    Good News From Friends

    enthusiastic man greeting woman at bar
    Be genuinely happy for your friends when they share good news. Caiaimage/Paul Bradbury/Getty Images

    When your friend announces good news, be the first to congratulate her. Allow her to bask in the joy of whatever is happening, without saying or doing anything to dampen her happiness. Only add positive comments that show your support as a friend.

    Avoid turning the conversation around and making it about something going on in your own life. Never make a comment about good news always being followed by bad, or you might discover that your name has been taken off the list for future announcements....MORE Follow the Golden Rule and treat your friend's good news as you would want yours to be treated.

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  • 04 of 05

    Public Kudos

    Congratulating coworkers
    Be the first to announce other people's good news. Caiaimage/Paul Bradbury/Getty Images

    Offer to take the announcement to another level and offer public kudos. Although you won’t be the center of attention, you can feel good about knowing you did the right thing. Also, doing this may earn you first dibs on learning good news in the future. It’s always good to be “in the know.” Others will see you as gracious and confident enough to shine the light on your coworkers.

    When you let the world – or everyone in your office – know that something wonderful has happened to one of their own,...MORE make sure you do it in the right spirit. The initial announcement is not the time to roast the person or make her feel that she got something she didn’t warrant. You may want to jot down a list of reasons you feel that her good news is well deserved. Use this list to build up to the crescendo and then be the first to applaud.

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  • 05 of 05

    Supervisors Acknowledging Employees

    Manager speaking with employees
    A good manager will give people credit where it's deserved. Thomas Barwick / Getty Images

    A good manager will let everyone know that her team is filled with hardworking employees who have good ideas. The group is more likely to be cohesive and effective. Showing off her employees and praising them in public demonstrates her management skills.

    When a supervisor takes credit for an idea or work of one of her employees, no one is happy. The employee will seethe, either privately or in a venting session with coworkers. No one will ever trust that supervisor again.