The Five Love Languages at Work

Employee Motivation MHRC Veran Performance

The Five Love Languages, written in 1995 by Gary Chapman, explores the idea that people give and receive love in five different ways:

Acts of service · Gifts · Physical touch · Quality time · Words of affirmation

It is written that each person has a preferred method of giving and receiving love, and to have a successful relationship with someone, you not only need to understand your own love language, but the other person’s as well.


What’s interesting is that this idea of the five love languages can also be applied to relationships you have at work.  No, this isn’t about creating romantic relationships in the workplace; it’s about knowing the most effective way to treat someone.

We all want to be able to get along with our coworkers whether we’re a supporting team member, a leader, or on equal footing.  Effective communication is key in this area, and showing appreciation for what others do can help foster positive relationships.

Employee motivation is a good example.  When it comes to rewards, employees will respond differently to various types of compensation.  For instance, some employees would prefer more holidays (quality time) over a salary increase (gifts).

Another example is developing stronger connections with others through different means such as verbal encouragement (words of affirmation), helping someone out on a project (acts of service), or a high five/pat on the back (physical touch).

Of course these five love languages are more relevant to intimate  relationships, but you can see the ties they have to the workplace.  When it comes down to it, communication with others is something that is required of us, so why not try to maximise it as much as we can for ultimate efficiency?


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