The Continuous Dialogue In The New Assessment

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Every employee needs personal appreciation for the work he does, specially if a positive development can be observed there. A sincere compliment is often experienced as a hot shower. It shows that, for example, a manager (the client) has an eye and ear for the functioning of his employee.

In addition, it plays a major role in perpetuating positive behavior. However, the compliment must be specific. With a compliment such as: "you did well," the recipient can't do much.

Performance compliment

An experiment with children who had to make a puzzle, taught that children who chose a performance compliment ('that you did quickly') were given the second round for a 'easier' to make puzzle. They thought: I can do puzzles, I just heard that, then I have to make that happen again. Children who in the first round received compliments about their behavior and / or the process ('you start at the corners, beautiful, this creates a system' or, 'what good you asked for help') chose in a following round harder puzzle.

In the first (research) round their supervisor didn't look at his watch but at the behavior of the children. Because these children had learned something about how they puzzled, they chose a difficult follow-up assignment (puzzle). They thought: 'Come on, there is no puzzle that I can't handle, I just start at the corners'.

They have learned how to puzzle and learn about behavior they have to show more often so that they will use that behavior more often.


Compliments are important motives to continue to perform well and give energy to keep going. Employees who never receive compliments can become frustrated and insecure. Because they never hear from someone whether they do their work well or not, they can start to doubt themselves.

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