Why everyone should have a “Happy Folder” in their corporate email account

Praise.

Print it. Laminate it. Affix to the wall in the best $5 certificate frame you can find.

Cherish it. For it only pops by to say hello every once and a while.

Corporate Email Happy Folder. N.Hayter 2010.When I started in the corporate world I instantly found it to be very different to work I’d done as a contractor or freelancer. In freelance/contract work you’re constantly receiving feedback and mostly praise for your skills and work. Its self-validation on an almost daily basis. You feel good about your work and yourself.

Move to corporate life and you’re one of many experts jostling for position with each other in the field. Credit is rare. The notion is you shouldn’t be praised because you are doing what you’re paid to do. The extra effort or creativity you applied to get a result is oft overlooked.

There is hope though. Some people are able to recognise good work and give praise and credit where it’s due. These people send you “happy emails” with a thoughtful note telling you you’ve done a good job.

In my first job I started the concept of a “happy folder” where I stashed all these little gems. On bad days I’d flick through them for a bit of a lift.

Anyone with a corporate email account should give it a try. Its a good reminder that you are valued on days when you feel like you are not.

A bit on the photoshopping
This image is a 5 minute Photoshop job using the curved rectangle shape tool, rasterising the layers, adding slight gradients and subtle drop shadows. The iconic pixelated cursor icon was created using a square pen tool on a transparent background.

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