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The 5 languages framework has helped me navigate personal and romantic relationships in the past, so it makes sense to look for ways to recognize and appreciate people at work in a different setting. It deals with the physical touch love language by taking a "hands off" approach and only suggesting things like fist bumps or high fives, but largely avoids much else due to the litigious sexual harassment and hostile work environment potential. That's unfortunate because many people would appreciate appropriate physical connection...the challenge is having the language to navigate boundaries that are personal and fluctuate based on other factors. Even still the book was a cop out in that regard and could have spent more time unpacking that.
I have used this book to help my directors improve morale and positive connections with employees. The free link to the MBI assessment is nice, but the assessment is kind of crap. You could take one of the dozens of free "love languages" tests out there to see what your workplace equivalent would be. I even paid extra for the "government specific" test, and it was next to useless, without any specific links to governmental issues (public trust, unions, transparency, etc.)...
I think most people would find that they have the same love languages and appreciation languages. The assessment also doesn't give you a lot of practical guidance for how to communicate in non primary languages. That said, it's a fine tool but shouldn't be the only one you use when it comes to motivating employees.
I found this book interesting and informative, but I found the authors a little too interested in selling you their products and services. I wasn't looking for an infomercial trying to justify their existence, but it read a little like that. As a broad overview of the concept, it works. Not much for actually getting into the teeth of their ideas, though.
Like so many others on here I feel this is a great book and a must read for almost anyone but the code in the book was no good for the quiz in the back. Supposedly this was a new book, not a book in "new" condition. Pretty disappointed, to pay more than the price of the book to take the quiz.
Book is good but I’m pretty disappointed in the seller. I tried to use the registration code and even though this was listed as new, it says the one time use code has been used. Purchase directly from company to be safe.
The book was as expected, but the MBA Inventory access code inside the back cover has already been used. The cost to purchase another code is $15.00 which exceeds the cost of the book that I have already paid for. This is very disappointing as viewing and taking the inventory is an integral part of understanding the languages and determining how to move forward with the program within my organization.
The book was exactly what I was looking for and a very god read. Problem? I thought I bought a NEW book with an included complimentary access code to take an assessment and when I entered the code on the back cover of the book, it has already been redeemed. Guess the book was used by somebody as I did not get the ability to utilize the free assessment that is to be included in the book purchase. VERY disappointing.
There are some good ideas here, but mostly I think taking a model that works for a couple in a relationship and mapping it onto the workplace runs into predictable problems.
The 5 languages are: 1. Words of affirmation 2. Quality time 3. Acts of service 4. Tangible gifts 5. Physical touch
Some issues: 1. Well, clearly, number five is maybe not such a good idea at work, as the authors concede. 2. Acts of service here ends up being helping me do my job. Honey, can you take out the trash (or, really, honey doing that w/o the request) is just not the same thing as making photocopies for me or helping me with this presentation.
Well, etc. The interpersonal dynamics of a romantic relationship involve an explicit partnership that is very different from a workplace team. As one example, you don't always like your colleagues... but you can still think they're great at their job and value them as colleagues. But hey, you don't have to invite them to lunch. Also, gaak, the notion of expecting colleagues to provide gifts.
Looking at this instead as the power relationship of a manager to his/her underlings instead of coworkers tweaks the equations, but they still come out wrong.
Code worked for me, FWIW. I'm told my language is quality time; I'll guess that words of affirmation was a close second. Those are definitely the best of the five to my mind, but when I'm give a specific list of things I might like colleagues or bosses to do, about half of them make me gag. (I'm probably just a difficult employee.)
I think there are some useful ideas here to understand oneself and workplace dynamics. And just, you know, getting along with people. But mostly the five languages don't map onto the workplace so well.
3.0 out of 5 starsHelpful, but the sales pitch and marketing for further workplace consulting services is distracting
Reviewed in the United States on 24 July 2019
I love books on organizational management and leadership (I obviously live a boring life and spent too much time in the military), so when this book came out, I wanted to read it. I will say I learned a few important things about myself and others that I think will be helpful in practice.
I know that feeling appreciated in the workplace is important, no matter who you are - upper management to the most junior employee. It certainly is still very important to me in my worklife, 20+ years in. However, before this book, I had never contemplated that what makes one person feel appreciated may not work for another. I knew that I tend to work for praise, but that others appreciate tangible tokens of appreciation, but I never took it deeper than that. I had also never considered I had also never really considered the differece between recognition and appreciation (the company wide magnets given to everyone for zero safety incidents vs. something more personalized expressed in a language of appreciation that employee prefers).
This book explains 5 different ways people communicate appreication, and how to determine which language of appreciation is most (and least) important to you, and even colleagues. When I first started reading, I was thinking this wasn't very important, because a "Thank you" or maybe a gift card or handwritten note for a job well done would suffice for anyone. However, as the book points out, if one employee's primary language of appreication is Acts of Service (ie, they appreciate someone pitching in to help them out with tasks), a supervisor walking by, and saying "Great job, keep going!" isn't going to have the impact that the supervisor likely intends. Rather, that employee will likely be frustrated thinking, "Yeah, talk is cheap, I could use a little help!" Another example that resonated with me was my own discovery that my primary langage of appreciation was Words of Affirmation. This explains why when I've received trinkets from my company in the past - magnets for for 5 years of service, etc, it really had zero impact on my feeling appreciated.
Overall, this book opened my eyes to a new and important concept regarding appreciation in the workplace. On the back flap of the book is a code you can enter into a proprietary website run by the authors to figure out your languages of appreciation. The bascic package is free. However, what I didn't appreciate was all of the "upselling" in this book. From offering delux packages to find out more about your language of appreciation to marketing the Appreciation at Work program to readers (i.e., bring us into your workplace and we'll do training for your organization). While I think a line or two about the resources the authors can bring to a workplace isn't out of line, the level of upselling throughout the book was frankly annoying and distracting.
There are good concepts here, but the authors need to knock off the sales pitch and let their readers enjoy the book without being hit upside the head with advertising and upgrades.