A way to thank a colleague

Let’s say you have a great collaboration with someone in your company. What can you do to thank them? You can give them feedback about it.

Giving direct feedback to the person about something they did well, can help them in two ways. First, it reinforces that behavior. Second, it makes them feel good.

In most companies, people have managers. Managers are responsible for the performance of the people they manage among other things.

When I was a manager at GitHub, I was surprised pleasantly by a random person when they shared some feedback about one of my direct reports. I didn’t ask for that feedback. But they shared it, and that helped both myself and their colleague.

It helped me because it was hard to keep track of everything and notice things with a remote distributed team of many many people. So every piece of feedback I could get helped.

It helped their colleague because their manager now had a better understanding of their performance. In a way that would probably be missed by them if it wasn’t for the random unsolicited feedback.

What to say

When you share feedback be specific about it. Instead of saying:

Maria was great during our collaboration on project Unicorn.


Maria was great during our collaboration on project Unicorn. She helped me many times by reducing the scope and maintain clarity around what was left to do. She adjusted her working ours to my timezone because she knew how difficult it was for me to do that. She was always positive, even during difficult times. Especially when the project status was red and we were at risk of missing the deadline. That kept the whole team motivated until the project status was back to green. I wanted to share that about her with you, and I hope it helps. You have a great person in your team.

Main points

  • Give feedback to your colleague.
  • But also consider sharing that with their manager.
  • Be very specific about your experience with that person.

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Petros View All →

Head of Support at @GitBook where I build a calm Support team. Learning Elixir. Writing 2D retro games. Previously @GitHub.

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