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Gratitude at work

One of the benefits of being a member of the Canadian Association of Professional Speakers is that we get to know people who are experts in different disciplines. I have known Steve for over 10 years and I have a tremendous respect for Steve and his approach to life. He has educated a lot of people about the benefits of gratitude. We have become good friends and I know he has had a very positive influence on many businesses and people. Check out the resources Steve shares on his website and see if they can help your business.

For 8 years through high school and university I worked part time at the grocery store. Most of my time was spent working in the produce department from the early through mid 1980’s. At that time, there was nowhere near the variety of fruits and vegetables that we see today but during the 80's, I was fortunate enough to witness the successful introduction of a new product on our produce shelves.

Fresh bean sprouts.

I don't know his name but I do remember how I felt every time I interacted with him. He was positive. No, he was relentlessly positive. As a result, me and my colleagues always felt better after he dropped a 25 pound garbage bag full of bean sprouts at the loading dock.

He was a newly minted immigrant who was just learning English and spoke with a very heavy Vietnamese accent. It’s a good thing that words only make up 10-15% of communication because we could understand his message primarily from his attitude and hand gestures.

Get a load of this. He:

  • sold the bean sprouts—driving store to store
  • grew the bean sprouts—I think in his home during the time I worked at the store
  • took orders and delivered the bean sprouts in his personal car—and not a big car
  • made hand-written invoices and collected for his orders
  • happily took back and credited the store’s account for any bean sprouts that went brown, which happened more than he would have wanted because bean sprouts have such a short shelf-life.
  • didn’t have the benefit of pro bono marketing services or social media to get his message out

It must have been a risky venture.All the while, he is:

  • trying to learn English
  • raising a family
  • finding his place in a new part of the world

And here’s the thing—he was always positive—always ! He was a joy to see walk up the produce aisle with a garbage bag in a buggy.

Today, his company operates a boutique Asian grocery store in the city.

I believe there is one underlying factor that was critical to his success.

His attitude.

I could be wrong, but I doubt it because science is on my side.

Of the 24 positive character strengths identified by Dr Martin Seligman in what constitutes a flourishing, thriving life, the single best predictor is gratitude. Yes, that’s right, gratitude.

As you navigate the next phase of growth for your company and how you intend to move your product into and out of retail stores, one thing is for certain.

You will have challenges.

If you want to be able to confidently move through rejection and negativity, successfully land your product on the shelf and ultimately be a face that your customer smiles and embraces when you walk in the door—then work on your attitude. Seriously, no matter how you rate yourself on your attitude, it’s time to step up your game. A positive attitude doesn’t happen by chance and it doesn’t stick by chance. You have to be intentional about building and cultivating your mindset.

Here are three proven steps to build and maintain a positive thriving mindset:

  1. each day make a list of what you are grateful for
  2. each day read or listen to the gratitudes shared from at least one other person (this is a game changer)
  3. stop watching the news

You don’t need any help with step 3, but if you want help with step 1 and 2, then register for the Daily Gratitudes. Think of The Daily Gratitudes as your very own virtual Gratitude Coach reminding you each weekday to step back and make your list and supplying you with inspiring ideas so your gratitude practice doesn’t get stale.

The Daily Gratitudes is a game changer and I hope you take advantage of it.

PS: one last tip—don’t go it alone in the complex retail environment. Get professional advice and support from someone who has a proven track record.

My dream is one billion happier people. While not the typical career path of an Electrical Engineer, I began exploring the relationship between gratitude and philanthropic giving during my MBA—receiving the Gold Medal for highest academic standing. Since then, I’ve been writing and conducting practice-based gratitude research and teaching the habits of gratefulness—more than sixteen years now. What has emerged is our science-based program, Gratitude At Work. It's a simple, yet innovative approach to thriving leadership and business results.

I founded Gratitude at Work in 2006 and started hosting conversations in my community which have since grown into work with leaders around the world, shifting cultures, helping leaders and their teams be happier at work by bringing more gratitude to work daily—audiences love the process & owners love the results.

My 2019 book, Surviving to Thriving - The 10 Laws of Grateful Leadership, was named 1 of 8 recommended reads by Greater Good Science Center at University of California Berkeley and 1 of 5 positive psychology books for a happier 2019 in inc. Also in 2019, I was an inaugural winner of Canada's CEO Trusted Advisor Awards Program and in 2017, I was awarded the gold standard certification in professional speaking, CSPTM. I’m a son, brother, husband, father and unapologetically proud grandfather. My kids poke fun at my gratitude work (air quotes) as we are heading to one billion with an on-line community that gives everyone easy access to the secrets of gratitude and grateful leadership. I’m a lifelong resident of Halifax, Nova Scotia and trying to do my part to make my community a better place to live.

Some businesses on the west coast are concerned about supply shortages for sugar as the holidays approach. A key ingredient for bakeries, the strike at Rogers sugar refinery in Vancouver could impact their operations during one of the busiest times of year.

Where is Peter Speaking?

We have been working hard to put together a new video to promote the work we do speaking at conferences and events. Hope you enjoy the video!