The Importance of an Affirmation

Richard M. Rosene
Cincinnati, OH

I was slated to undergo knee replacement surgery at Christ Hospital in Cincinnati, Ohio. The hospital strongly recommended that my wife and I attend a class that would explain what to expect on the day of surgery and during the ensuing therapy. We had no hesitation signing up for the class; it seemed like a no-brainer.

The day came for the presentation. The presenter was a nurse with 29 years of experience. We knew this was going to be a most helpful hour of learning all we had to know about the operation I was soon to have.

This nurse was a consummate professional and as thorough as we hoped she would be. She welcomed questions and never seemed to hurry through the answers. I had a few to ask her and felt she gave me straightforward, helpful answers.

Importance of an AffirmationThe door to the classroom remained open, as there was no distracting noise to be of any concern. About halfway through the session, a very distinguished gentleman appeared at the doorway, stuck his head in the room, and announced that Karen was one of the hospital’s most valued employees. He said that we would do well to listen carefully to all she had to teach us.

Karen’s face blushed as she heard this man’s affirmations. As he hurried on his way, she knew we must have been wondering who this gentleman was that spoke so kindly of her. Somewhat embarrassed, she let us know he was the hospital’s CEO. It made me wonder how many CEOs would make the spontaneous effort to voice such positive thoughts in such a setting. As brief as the interaction was, it did, without doubt, leave a lasting effect on this nurse’s self-esteem.

Originally published as HeroicStories #867

5 thoughts on “The Importance of an Affirmation”

  1. What a great example this gentleman set. Affirmation and appreciation can make such a difference. I’m sure that there was high morale in that hospital and that the staff went out of their way to achieve even more. The CEO certainly has a high impact on the work environment, but everyone contributes. We can all do this.

  2. Positive feedback from a higher up is the most underrated morale booster. I had a boss who would always thank his employees after a hard day and tell them they did a good job. It was so wonderful to know that the misery you went through was appreciated. Now I have a job where my bosses never even speak to me much less notice whether I try hard or not. Morale there is awful and I hope to not have to stay long

  3. Another testimonial of how just a few positive words can bring joy and increased confidence to another. So simple, yet of great importance. What a great CEO, and they aren’t all like that! But all of us have the ability to uplift those around us, from the check-out line to our friendly minister; and especially, I would add, to our families.

  4. As an RN, and a certified childbirth educator, I can attest to the wonderful impact a positive response makes! Just knowing I really made a difference for a patient made my entire day!

  5. What a great CEO! I am more than sure that Karen may have been embarrassed at the situation when it first happened but what a great thing to happen especially in front of a group of people – for them to know that he took time out of his busy schedule to make sure that she felt very much appreciated! He did it in such a way that she knew he meant it – I have a supervisor that would sometimes say it but you could tell she really did not mean it 🙁


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