PMI Blog – Harnessing the law of reciprocity

0 Posted by - January 3, 2014 - Leadership, PMI Activities, Skills & Tools, Trends & New Thinking

Harnessing the law of reciprocity



Power of reciprocation

Power of reciprocation

I have become an ardent advocate for “the law of reciprocity” — the principle that when you do a favor for someone, he or she will have a deep-rooted psychological urge to do something nice in return. And I believe it should be consciously practiced within the work culture.

Reciprocating to a goodwill gesture is one of the universal rules of good manners. It is a principle that comes naturally to many of us despite our culture. Organisations and businesses are now capitalising on this principle to build relationships internally with their employees and externally with clients and customers. Reciprocity exists in many different ways, such as:

  • Information or good advice that is of value to the receiver

  • Help or a kind gesture

  • Recognizing and appreciating a person’s contribution

  • Remembering events that are of importance to others

  • Rewards, celebrating personal or group achievements and successes

  • Sharing job opportunities or networking leads

  • Creating convenient services for employees, such as complimentary or subsidized meals for workers or on-site child care

  • Free services for clients and customers

  • Thank-you messages

  • Public acknowledgment or mentions of good work


So how can a culture of reciprocity help projects and those who work on them? 


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