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So I'm several weeks into consistent O3s with my team, and I now know all of their spouse's, children's, pet's names, favorite sports teams, etc. including their birthdays. What do I do with this last piece of information? We're in a fairly conservative work environment, but we are a tight, high performing team, and I'd like to celebrate as appropriate. My "I" doesn't really register on the DISC scale and I don't really know how to "celebrate" the event, or if I even should. And what about wedding anniversaries, children's graduations, birth of a child or grandchild? It seems like these are all things that should be acknowledged across the board but I'm not sure, in the past we all said something only when the individual has brought it up. Now that I know, I feel a responsibility to act. I didn't see a podcast on it, looking for any feedback or resources. Thanks!

gehrhorn's picture
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For all of those a simple verbal acknowledgment or a nice card will be appropriate. Birth of a child may merit a basket sent to the house or flowers. 


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Good advice, I see birth of a child (and death of a close family member) being treated a little differently in my parent office too. 

mrreliable's picture

Be careful with things like birthdays. One of my business associates is a Jehovah's Witness. They don't celebrate birthdays, among other events.

I asked him, "Does that mean you don't have to worry about getting your wife a present and flowers on her birthday?"

He laughed and said, "Everything has a limit."

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That does help bring up those subjects though, hopefully in a non-threatening manner, so that we can understand each other better.

acao162's picture

Do you have someone on the team who would want to throw a monthly "birthday party"?  We only just started doing this, organized by my over the top High I assistant, and the effect on team morale has been significant.  She organizes a potluck meal and a dessert, takes an hour and everyone leaves happy.  You may have to organize the first one, but ask your high I to help.  (S/he will probably take over without even realizing it.)

I thought it was a little over the top at first but the relationships between members is much stronger and they are more keen to pull together on tough days since we started eating cake.  We use the party to celebrate all the good things - babies, anniversaries, graduations etc - whatever people want to share.  For sheer relationship building, I'd recommend it.

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I do have a high I, but having difficulty getting her to act like one, haha. A low key monthly celebration after a team meeting sounds ideal to me, but since the team is not co-located that doesn't work well. That makes even getting everyone's signatures on a card and to the person in a timely manner a challenge. I will have to think creatively on how to do something like this virtually. Thanks.

lindagc's picture

Personally, I don't tell anyone when my birthday is and prefer not to share private information. My workplace used to have a monthly birthday lunch, but it quickly became onerous as folks were being asked to celebrate and contribute to the birthdays of people they didn't know, or didn't care for, and the lunches came around too soon.

If you know the birthday of your staff member, quietly give them a card and leave it at that.