My Most Memorable Reward


I’ve gotten lots of rewards over the years - all of them appreciated, very few of them actually memorable. With a few rare exceptions.


My most memorable reward actually didn’t come from a manager, but came for someone who worked for me. We had been working on a difficult project together - meaning she was doing a ton of work and I was trying to provide guidance and direction. It was an idea we both thought was needed, but would not necessarily be well received with Sr. Leadership.


We had finally gotten the presentation to a point where it was convincing and well thought out. We were going to present it in a meeting with Sr. Leadership and I was confident, because of the work she did, that we were going to get approval.


One morning when I got to my office, there was a pack of gum with a note. The brand of gum was Extra. The note said “Just a little something to tell you how Extra special you are. Thanks for the leadership.”


It was clever, thoughtful, and unexpected. That was 5 years ago and I still remember not only the details, but the feeling when I saw it.