Compliments board


How would you like a simple exercise that puts a smile on your colleagues’ face almost instantly? Especially now, while we are collaborating in a virtual world we lack those little gestures that are common when we can see each other in real life. The Compliments board is a simple but very effective tool. Purpose of the board is to boost moral, (re)build trust and strengthen the connection between team members. Use it at to end any meeting with a positive vibe, as an icebreaker at the start of a meeting or as part of the retrospective of agile teams.

How to use the Compliments board

Before you start your exercise, make sure you prepare the board. Minimal preparation is adding the names of the people that are joining the exercise, but you can enrich the board with avatars, profile pictures or any other decoration you would like.

  • Explain the team what the purpose is of the exercise and how it works:

  • Take a few minutes and have the participants think about the colleagues (team, direct colleagues, project team, workshop participants etc.).

  • Explain: think of something that you are grateful for and why, for one or more of your colleagues. (Coaching tip: for maximum impact emphasize on why people are grateful, make sure people have time to think this through.)

  • The participants grab a virtual Post-It note / sticky note, write down what they are grateful for and why and stick it in the placeholder with your colleague's name, avatar or picture.

  • Once everyone is finished they take a look at their own compliments.

  • Again, take some time: Ask the participants: what compliment is valuable to you, makes you happy or moves you? If it feels ok, you can share your thoughts with the rest of the group or enjoy it by yourself.

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Coaching agile, working change
I have a strong preference for assignments in the transformation work field. I always strive for the best possible connection between management and employees.
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