25 Goodwill Gestures to Spread Happiness at Work

These tiny goodwill gestures require minimal effort, but can truly help to make life that little bit easier for your co-worker. Spread the love this season!

June 20, 2023

“Kindness is a language that everyone understands.”

Yesterday, I wrote an article about how managers can (and should) encourage acts of goodwill across their team. (From making a cup of tea to helping out when things get tough).

But at the end of the day, it’s kind of down to us. You can’t force kindness.

Why bother?

Ok, apart from the obvious and altruistic reason that it’s the nice thing to do, there are plenty of other (slightly more selfish) reasons why you should help out and support your co-workers…

  • To build friendships. (Click here to see why this is SO important).
  • They may just return the favour.
  • It’s great for your mental health (that warm and fuzzy feeling…)
  • It’ll impress your boss.
  • You’ll have more influence (people don’t respond to those they don’t like).

So, even if it is merely for your own sake – let’s spread some goodwill this festive season!


So, this blog post actually came about because I stumbled across an article by CV Library.

They conducted a survey and found that the following 10 “goodwill gestures” from colleagues tend to make us feel all warm and fuzzy inside…

  1. A bit of support (simple).
  2. A cup of tea or coffee.
  3. A compliment about our work.
  4. Constructive feedback.
  5. A smile.
  6. A bit of help when work becomes overwhelming.
  7. Being taught something new.
  8. Snacks.
  9. Someone offering to cover our shift when we need it.
  10. A funny email.

But there are tons of ways we could spread the cheer throughout our teams!

Here are a few more...

11. Gifts. Perhaps you could replace an item that they’ve lost? Or bring in their favourite chocolates when they’ve had a particularly tough week?

12. Integrate everyone. Take shy and new colleagues under your wing! We’ve all been there.

13. Ask about something other than work. You’d be surprised how much a brief conversation about a colleague’s weekend will make them feel valued.

14. Ask for opinions. People like to feel valued and respected. Asking for their ideas, advice and opinions will really help to boost confidence and self-esteem.

15. Socialise outside of work. You don’t have to be best friends with people at work, but the odd social occasion will really cement relationships and make the office a friendlier place to be.

16. Give colleagues a pep talk. Sometimes, all you need is a few kind words from a friendly face and your problems will melt away.

17. Shout about their success. If you know a colleague has done something brilliant, make sure the boss knows about it. (Most people don’t like to “suck up” and boast about themselves).

18. Tell them when you hear them get complimented. If you overhear some kind words about someone, let them know; this is bound to make them smile and will really boost their confidence.

19. Clean the microwave (goodness forbid!!!) Sometimes you’ve just got to go above and beyond for your colleagues…

20. Tell a joke. (Make it a good one)!

21. Give someone a lift on a horrible rainy day. There’s nothing worse than struggling home in the pouring rain after a tough day at work.

22. Buy someone lunch. Offer to grab lunch for someone who’s too busy to leave the room.

23. Say thank you! Send an email, leave a post it note or just say it out loud, there are tons of great ways to show your gratitude – click here for some more quirky inspiration!

24. Stop a rumour. Gossip is unprofessional, unnecessary and just plain mean so the kind thing to do is to stop it dead when you hear it.

25. Let someone borrow your umbrella at lunch. So simple, it costs you nothing and could save your colleague a very soggy afternoon.

Ready to spread some goodwill?

There are so many things we could do to make life that little bit easier for our co-workers, with pretty much minimal effort from ourselves. Spread the love this season!

Recruiter Pro Tip Feeling a bit Grinch-y? Not in the slightest bit interested about spreading goodwill? This article by David R Hamilton may change your mind: The 5 Side Effects of Kindness. In short, kindness is good for everyone!

If you’d like to read more career advice and tips on how to find your dream job, click here to subscribe to our blog. We’ll send across a quick weekly email, on a Wednesday, with the latest.

And for more inspiration on small (but really important) acts of kindness, check out these posts…

Good luck.

Coburg Banks - Multi-Sector Recruitment Agency
We help great people get brilliant jobs in top companies.

By clicking “Accept”, you agree to the storing of cookies on your device to enhance site navigation, analyse site usage, and assist in our marketing efforts. View our Cookie Policy for more information.