Spreading the Power of Positive Reinforcement

I always enjoy hearing when readers liked “Green Beans and Ice Cream” so much that they had to share it.

Cindy Worell, a branch manager at Prospect Mortgage in Massachusetts, recently sent me an email saying she did just that.

Worell’s family has been involved in fundraising for a number of community groups for the past 10 years, most recently for the Run of Hope, a 5k that benefits the Massachusetts General Hospital’s pediatric cancer center.

Their giving attitude caught the eye of Representative Susan Williams Gifford, who sent the Worrells a letter recognizing them on their superb work.

“There is nothing better than opening an oversized envelope that is hand-addressed, with stamps with a laminated article about you and a letter of recognition; Bill Sims, Jr. shares it best in his book,” Worrell said in the email, “and we plan to deliver the three scoops soon in person to her office.”

Worrell first heard about “Green Beans and Ice Cream,” when I did a lecture at Prospect Mortgage about a month ago. She went out and bought copies of the book soon afterward.

Worrell said she and her family also want to continue reinforcing positive behavior by “carrying the baton of (Gifford’s) idea with others in our community as we recognize them with a letter from us and laminated [newspaper] article and the book, ‘Green Beans and Ice Cream,’ and special thanks for being in our community.”

As I explain in my book and as Worrell and Gifford found out, the power of giving and receiving positive reinforcement cannot be emphasized enough. Can you ever have too much positive reinforcement in your system? Not if it’s sincere, and properly delivered. It is only when people get specific feedback about what they are doing well that they want to continue such behavior.

Not only was Worrell’s own attitude toward volunteering and giving back to her community reinforced by Representative Gifford, but she felt so good that she wanted to give others in her community the chance to be inspired to do good on their own.

Worrell said she purchased about 30 more copies of “Green Beans and Ice Cream” to give out to students at a university career fair and also gave copies to people working at Prospect Management’s affinity companies, including Carmine Martignetti, President of Martignetti Company and Dunkin Donuts Franchise Owner Dino Pimental.

“Our mantra is education and giving back,” Worrell said.

Now, it would seem, that mantra includes passing along positive reinforcement, too.

Way to go Cindy! Keep it up!

State Rep Gifford Letter



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