The art of making people feel special

The art of making people feel special – Future Leaders Blog – – 03 Apr 2017

Wow, that’s a really interesting idea!” Steve looked attentively at Sally. “I had never thought about that. What made you consider it?”

image from shutterstock

Sally lit up. “Well, I’ve thought about it for a while and have discussed it with my colleagues recently who also thought the idea had real potential. I’m glad you liked it, do you want to hear some more on how I think it could work in practice?

Steve nodded. “Yes please, that would be really helpful.”

This very short story points at the art of making people feel special.

Because, just like in this conversation, isn’t it wonderful when someone really sees you, hears you, takes interest in what you think, appreciates your input, values your contribution? Simply put, isn’t it great when someone makes you feel special? Of course it is.

We have all been given the ability to make other people feel special.

It’s pretty cool.

We have all been given the ability to make other people feel that way.

And what happens when we do is pretty special – it engages, it makes others want to put that extra effort in, it makes people want to help and support. It’s pretty cool.

Here are some of our key recommendations on how to do it:

  • Be genuinely interested in the other person. Be curious about them. Recognise that everyone has something very unique to contribute (their experience, ideas, knowledge etc)
  • Be 100% present, don’t glance at your phone, don’t think about your next meeting, but really give the person in front of you your full attention
  • Confirm and praise their input, specifically. Recognise that they have made a unique and valuable contribution
  • Use the word “and” instead of “but” if disagreeing with what they say. (Eg. “Great idea, and how would that work in practice?” instead of “Great idea, but I don’t think it would work.”) “And” builds bridges. “But” builds walls

Go on, make someone feel special today!

About the authors

Mandy Flint & Elisabet Vinberg Hearn, award-winning authors of ”The Team Formula”.

Their latest book, multi-award-winning ”Leading Teams – 10 Challenges: 10 Solutions”, published by Financial Times International is a practical tool for building winning teams. You can download a free chapter of the book at

Praise for ”Leading Teams: ”Enjoyable to read. Simple to understand. Practical to implement. A must read for team members or leaders”Debbie Fogel-Monnissen, Executive Vice President, International Markets Finance Officer, Mastercard, NY, USA

Author: Excellence in Leadership

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