How to Have a Great Compliment Circle (Warm Shower).

What the heck is a compliment circle, and how do I facilitate it? Because we recommend you try it.

Table of contents.

The shower of compliments also called the warm shower, is about sitting down with your team. Then you will, in turn, get a Warm Shower of Compliments from each of your colleagues. 😍

This means you will put one of your colleagues in The Warm Shower of Compliments and when they have received compliments from everyone, you shift to the next colleague. The praise can be everything from a sentence to a string of compliments. You simply highlight any personal trait, skill, or strength that you appreciate about them.

Why should you try The Warm Shower of Compliments?

Receiving a compliment is fantastic and giving a compliment is just as lovely. We have a lot of things we appreciate and admire about our colleagues, friends, and family. But too rarely do we take ourselves the opportunity to think about what we appreciate and share it. The Warm Shower of Compliments is a rare opportunity to do this.

We promise this exercise will boost your team’s sense of recognition toward each other, and increase the awareness of each other's skills and strengths.

Our best tips for facilitating the compliment circle.

In this article, we have collected our best tips for creating a safe room where you and your colleagues can shower each other with compliments.

But first, here is what Anders from the team thought about the experience when we tried this ourselves here at Zoios:

“When I first heard about the exercise, I got nervous, thinking it would be awkward. 😬

What should I say to the others? And worse, what are they going to say about me?

But actually, it turned out amazingly.


The sensation of delivering compliments to the others on the team was excellent. It made me think about what you admire and appreciate about them - both regarding their skills and on a personal level. Hearing the others complimenting each other was just as great. It made me think about some personality traits that my colleagues possess that I had not thought about. 🤗

Getting compliments myself was not awkward. It felt comfortable, and it was nice to get confirmed that others valued me for the things that I hoped. So it was a great kickstarter for self-reflection.“💡

What should I be aware of as a facilitator?

As you unquestionably can imagine, this exercise can at first seem a bit terrifying for most people. Therefore, we have listed our best 3 tips below. It will help you create a safe room where you can support your colleagues to get comfortable and relaxed with The Warm Shower of Compliments.

Set clear expectations for what is anticipated.

As soon as you announce The Hot Shower of Compliments, most of your colleagues will start to worry about what they should tell each other. Therefore you must be aware of being very explicit about what you exactly mean when you tell them they should deliver a compliment to each other.

Remember, a compliment can be just a short sentence or a long string of compliments. Be sure to emphasize that both options are just fine. It varies a lot from each person how much they have on their heart; some people may be more concise, and some will like to use many words. Both things are totally okay.

Tip: Make sure to emphasize that this is not about being funny, but delivering some compliments that add real value to the person.

Set the example.

Wisely choose who you want to go first, handing out compliments. The person should be yourself or another person in the team that you know have an easy time talking and handing out praises. This is important for giving the exercise a great start.

Find the right location.

A large part of creating a safe room for this exercise is to find the right location. You obviously should not take your team to the cantina or any other place with buzz and noise.
We recommend that you take your team to a cozy conference room or a quiet corner where you can sit in a circle enabling everybody to see each other. The best is to find a place with some soft furniture where your whole team can sit relaxed. Also, it’s great to bring a cup of coffee, a soda, or a cold beer.

If you follow these three tips, everything should be just fine. Hopefully, The Warm Shower of Compliments will help your team get closer to each other and improve the overall sense of belonging.


Try it yourself.

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