Effective Messages of Support and Encouragement

From time to time, we all experience situations that leave us feeling down or doubting our abilities. In such times, we need the support of others to pick us up. Whether such scenarios occur in our personal lives or at work, they can negatively impact our productivity.

For this reason, businesses need to become adept at sharing meaningful and effective messages of support and encouragement. Let’s dive right into scenarios that would warrant a message of support and what one can say in that message.

Messages of support and encouragement during personal moments

In times of sickness

Sickness and extended sickness in particular is stressful to deal with. It gets even harder when an employee feels anxious about letting teammates down. Show a sick employee that the company cares by sharing messages of support and encouragement.

Some companies opt to buy a card and have each team mate write a personal message. As each has a different relationship, the messages will be more meaningful than a generic ‘Get well soon’.

When employees suffer the loss of a loved one

Losing a loved one is never easy. While on compassionate leave, managers should organise an official message of support and encouragement from the company. Craft something heartfelt to convey concern.

“Thinking of you and wishing you moments of peace and comfort as you remember a friend who was so close to you.”

It is also okay to include a sympathy basket with the message. It may contain items like comfort foods, poems of comfort or bible verses of comfort and a paid subscription to a grief counsellor.

When an employee graduates

A simple but heartfelt message of support when an employee graduates or acquires a new level of education is a sure way to increase morale.

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Messages of support and encouragement for workplace scenarios

When employees are trying to acquire a client

When employees have a client pitch or presentation, show you believe in them with a message of support and encouragement. Write a message that reminds them of their abilities and the preparations they have made to be able to take on the task.

Such a message will boost confidence and reiterate the trust a manager has in their employees.

When employees lose a client

What happens when employees fail to acquire that client or even lose one? Depending on your management style, you might react in one of 2 ways, blame or encouragement. Some managers believe in learning from mistakes, showing support and encouragement and moving on to the next challenge.

A message to say, ‘We did our best, we shall win them next time.’ Or one to say ‘Great effort team. We’ll get them next time’ can show support and encouragement.

When a manager leaves

From time to time, managers may leave the job for a new opportunity. If they have been a good manager, their absence will be felt on the management level and with their team.

The messages of support and encouragement in this instance will come from several sections of employees.

From management:

Management should send a message of gratitude and farewell to a colleague they have served with. Traditionally gifts are also given.

From employees:

The relationship that direct reports have with their manager is different from one the manager will have with fellow managers. If the manager has been a good one, he or she will have been a source of encouragement, a mentor, a champion and an advocate for their team. The team may also want to share their own messages of support and encouragement to their manager.

From the manager:

Messages of support and encouragement may also come from the manager. Someone leaving a company can be destabilising to other employees, particularly if this person has been a pillar. A cold exit will have a negative effect on continuing employees. You may even see a decline in job satisfaction and productivity in the wake of a manager’s exit.

To mitigate this, a message of support and encouragement from the exiting employee to their team is a good idea. This message may summarise their experience leading that team and reiterate the confidence the leader has in their abilities. If a successor has already been named, an endorsement of this person can go a long way in ensuring a smooth transition.

When someone gets a promotion

Messages of support and encouragement are also welcome in times of celebration. Show teammates and employees you wish them well when they rise through the ranks by sending a congratulatory message.

In this type of message, tell them you are proud of them, that they deserve the new position and that you have faith they will excel.

When someone is let go

People may be let go for a range of reasons. In some cases, it has nothing to do with their behaviour or performance. The COVID pandemic for instance saw many workers laid off so that businesses could survive.

Despite knowing this, it is still natural for employees to think they were let go due to a failing on their part. In this scenario it is a good idea to let employees know why they are being let go.

A message of support and encouragement may include a mention of the achievements of said employee, an offer to write them a recommendation and an endorsement of their abilities. For instance:

“We have had the pleasure of witnessing your commitment and hard work for the years you have been with us. Thank you for all your hard work. We know that your excellent people skills, leadership capabilities and team work will serve you no matter where you land. Please let us know if you need a recommendation from us. We are confident that you will do great things on your next venture.”

In Summary

One thing to keep top of mind when sending messages of support and encouragement is to make them personal. Tailor them to the specific employee and the specific situation, otherwise they will ring hollow.

Messages of encouragement show employees that you are truly concerned about their wellbeing. Aside from that, they can increase employee trust, loyalty and motivation.

Remember, messages of support and encouragement aren’t only valid for negative situations. Send one to help a colleague or employee celebrate.

Gerald Ainomugisha

Gerald Ainomugisha

Gerald is a freelance writer with a pen that is keen for entrepreneurship, business and technology. When he isn't writing insightful articles on employee engagement and corporate culture, Gerald can be found writing for a number of media outlets.