A More Personalized Greeting

Published: Monday, November 2, 2015

Welcome board at the Imagine Cup

Monday mornings when you go into work, has one of your coworkers asked: “How was your weekend?” I know I greet people like this pretty often. However, what I have lately come to realize that this question is just a formality. It is a question said in passing. I don’t take the time to listen. The insincerity is front and center and people recognize it. My greetings to others when I see them need a lot of work. A lot of times, it is just a head nod or a weak “How are you doing?” If we are to open up our mouths, what is the purpose?

Be more intentional with your greeting

People normally respond well to others who take the extra time to engage and truly care. Lately, I have really been focused on how I greet others and have had more positive conversations as a result. With a great greeting, people respond in kind and bring out a smile, a kind word in return, or both which makes for a better world, wouldn’t you agree? Here are a couple of tips to improve that greeting process:

  • Use the person’s name in the greeting. People like to hear their name. They become very attentive and responsive to this. If you are meeting the person for the first time, repeat their name with an adequate response such as “Nice to meet you Michael” or “Sarai is such a beautiful name.” It is a joy to respond back with a person’s name and see their reaction. Look at nametags and greet the grocery clerk, the barista, and the waitress by name.
  • Use a compliment if you can to start the conversation. With your coworkers, be on the lookout for those great nuggets where they have exceled and be sure to share that with them when you see them next.
  • Make sure you take the time needed to truly engage. Don’t just run off to your next meeting and cut the conversation short. Many times the blessing is in the fellowship. If that is unavoidable, make sure you follow up thoughtfully.
  • Listen intently. Put your phone away and avoid distractions as they are talking to you.   I fail at this miserably.  There is nothing important on the phone that can’t wait. Look at them face to face and empathize with what they are going through.
  • Don’t miss the opportunity to greet those you know well. When I see someone every day, am I nonchalant in my greeting. It may be a signal to them that you are taking for granted the relationship.  Invest here even more.

Greetings are prompts for the deeper relationships

When you greet someone, you are investing in their lives. You are letting them know that they matter to you. Take the time this week and observe how you are greeting others. Taking the time to invest in sincere greetings will provide abundant rewards in your life. How are you going to improve your greeting process?

As an aside, I have found some of the most wonderful greetings are at the beginning of Paul's letters in the bible.  They really show the heart of God and how He chooses to engage. Also read [Dale Carnegie's How to Win Friends and Influence People](http://www.dalecarnegie.com/about-us/dale-carnegie-books/) as it will provide deep insights on the power of saying someone's name.