In my opinion, one of the most influencing factors in motivating people is to show gratitude. Unfortunately, I often see that this is hardly applied. Often we hear what we could do better instead of an honest “thank you” for what has been achieved.

During my coaching intensive training at the E.S.B.A. – the European Systemic Business Academy - I learned the following appreciation exercise, which I like to call “a shower of appreciation”.

The exercise is done in triads. People need to have a good understanding of each other, best by having worked together. The three participants sit together, two facing each other and the third person sits in a 90 degree angle to the conversation, looking away (something like this: >^<). The two people then talk about this third person for some time (I tried 1min as well as 3min rounds). There are two rules: you are only allowed to say positive things and nothing that was said can be reduced in meaning by anything said afterwards. This is performed three times so that each person sits in the shower seat.

When I participated in this, it felt great. I have run this exercise with a group of 42 people and a heard about an experience that this was used with a team of 12 people. Every time, the participants reported that they felt great, appreciated and this gives a huge boost to motivation and trust.

I hope you can use this exercise too. I would be happy to hear from you.

One Response to “Shower of Appreciation – or, talking behind ones back”

  1. Corinna


    Thank you for describing this!
    I liked the idea so much, I incorporated it into the Retr-O-Mat:

    Hope you like it (or at least don’t mind)
    Thanks again,


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