33 (Actually Thoughtful) Compliments to Give to Your Coworkers

coworker compliments Reading Time: 3 minutes

Did you know that two of the best ways to boost productivity on a team are a) free pizza (really) and b) giving compliments?

Work days are busy, so we often forget to give feedback unless it’s absolutely necessary—which, in most cases, means critical feedback. But the quickest way to boost team morale (and generally improve your relationships with coworkers) is to remember to pause, say thank you, and give some props.

Still, there are compliments you give your friends—”Your hair looks so good today!” or “You’re a freaking badass.”—that don’t jive well with office etiquette. With that in mind, here are a few ideas for properly praising a coworker. Try doling out one a day, and see what happens.

Compliments on Specific Projects

  1. “I’m so impressed with how you handled that meeting today. I always admire how clearly you present your work.”
  2. “Hey! Your latest work on X is incredible. I can tell how hard you’ve worked on it—it shows.”
  3. “I just wanted to say that I see how hard you’ve been working on X. I admire how dedicated you are to the work you do.”
  4. “I loved what you had to say today about X, and I’d really like to learn more about it. Would love to grab a coffee and hear more, if you’re open to it!”
  5. “Way to go on that project! We were all blown away.” (Sometimes, short and sweet is awesome.)
  6. “I can’t get over how great your presentation was. I might need to pick your brain the next time I have to give one!”
  7. “I’ve never thought about X that way before. You made me see it totally differently. I love that!”

When They’re Having a Bad Day

  1. “Hey, that was kind of a tough crowd today. I’m impressed with how you handled everything.”
  2. “I just remembered that X project you did last month—remember how well it went over? We should talk about working on something like that again. I’m ready for another big win!”
  3. “I just want to say that I really admire all the work you’re doing.”
  4. “Thank you again for helping me on X project! I literally couldn’t have done it without you.”
  5. “Hey, I know work’s been crazy lately, and I just want to say that everything you do is incredible. Can I help lighten the load in any way?”
  6. “How do you always look so put together even on crazy weeks like this? It’s so impressive.”
  7. “Thank you again for [Insert literally anything here. That’s the beauty of it.]. I know I don’t say that enough.”

When They Had a Big Win

  1. “Congrats on the promotion. No one deserves this more.”
  2. “You killed it in there! It energized me to get started on X.”
  3. “I’m amazed by how well you do this job. It’s so inspiring.”
  4. “You inspire me to do better work.” (“Inspire” is always a good work compliment word.)
  5.  “I seriously can’t wait to see what you do next.”
  6. “Wow. Just wow.”
  7. “I’m definitely taking notes from the way you work. I want my work to be that good.”

Compliments on Their Skills

  1. “You are such an incredible problem solver.”
  2. “I’m so impressed by how you communicate. It makes everything easier.”
  3. “I don’t know what we would do with you and your ideas.”
  4. “Thank you so much for helping me on X. I’m not the best at [insert a skill here that’s one of their strong suits], so you were a lifesaver.”
  5. “You’ve got such amazing work ethic.”
  6. “Your skills made this project come together.”
  7. “You bring so much to this team, especially with presentations.” (You can use any specific element or skill the person tends to add to the project.)
  8. “You ask such insightful questions.”

When It’s Your Boss

  1. “Thank you for taking the time to work with me on this. It helped me get so much more out of this project.”
  2. “I appreciate you trusting me with added responsibility. It means a lot.”
  3. “I know you juggle a lot as our manager, so I just want to say that I’m so impressed by the great work you get done.”
  4. “I’ve learned so much from you.”

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