USC Marshall Professor Explains the Return on Investment of Gratitude
Glenn Fox, the Head of Design, Strategy and Outreach for USC Marshall’s Performance Science Institute, believes that being thankful comes with a significant return-on-investment in business. According to a press release, Fox has focused his latest research on correlating gratitude and human performance.
Ultimately, Fox believes that creating long-lasting relationships is key to good business, and that showing gratitude is one way to build that trust. “Gratitude is so closely correlated with happiness, optimism and lifestyle, that now we explore it as a tool to improve our work lives,” Fox said.
He believes that business leaders should acknowledge that demonstrating care for others, like employees, inspires people to take care of others too.
“When a company’s people cooperate and like each other, the company does better,” he said. “It’s that simple, and the research backs it up.”
However, employees should also show gratitude. “Even if you have a difficult job, practicing and looking for ways to experience gratitude can allow you to see clearly about the people around you who are good and what’s working,” he added. “It will help you change your perception. It’s a huge tool.”
Fox is a founding member of USC Marshall’s Performance Science Institute. He teaches classes about the science of peak performance, and leads training sessions with business leaders who want to foster a high-performance mentality in the workplace. “At the PSI we’re big fans of mindful practice,” he said. “This can be meditating on one’s breath or taking a walk and seeing how many things you can observe. Mindful practice can also include being grateful. We can observe the things people do to help us.”
How can you start expressing your gratitude at work? It’s easy! Take some time every day to jot down three things you’re grateful for or can appreciate in that moment. This can include people, your breakfast, or your job. “We’ve found that in large settings, in high performance teams, what motivates people to compete is gratitude,” Fox said. “Are you grateful for the team or not? Are you going to fight to protect it?”