Love language is a literal language. In a romantic relationship, it is how you show affection, appreciation, and give and receive love. If you and your partner are not on the same page, issues will likely arise because you are not speaking the same (love) language. When it comes to entrepreneurs and their team, a different kind of love language is necessary and effective. It is a way to communicate with your employees to let them know they are seen, understood, and appreciated. Rather than constantly applying pressure, you are motivating and recognizing the efforts of your team. This is a way to avoid stagnancy.

The Types of Different Love Languages

Entrepreneurs in love holding hands in the park
Entrepreneurs in love holding hands in the park

Each person is unique and has one or more of these love languages. If you do not know your own love language or that of your partner, have a conversation with them. Tell them when you feel loved the most and ask them when they feel loved the most.

While the lack of the words “I love you” may give a sense of doom to some people, others will be distraught if they receive a thoughtless gift. Here are the five types of love languages and what not to do.

Words of Affirmation

Actions are not the goal here; words are. If your love language is words of affirmation, you want your partner to be vocal. Compliments, affirmations, I love yous, and kind words are a vital component to making this relationship last. Send notes, texts, or cards with heartfelt words. Avoid criticism and not recognizing effort at all costs. Insults can leave those with words of affirmation as their love language shattered and they can easily feel forgotten.

Physical Touch

This is a mostly non-verbal love language. Emphasize love through hugs, cuddling, holding hands, and kisses. Physical affection is what those with this love language desire. Lack of physical touch will send them spiraling down the rabbit hole. Avoid cold or forced affection. You’ll want it to be warm and genuine.

Receiving Gifts

This love language is not about materialism. It’s about the thoughtfulness, love, and effort behind the gift they are receiving. People with this love language feel cared for and prized when they receive gifts. Avoid missing anniversaries, birthdays, and hasty gifts. Give gifts you feel enthusiastic about and offer small, thoughtful gestures.

Quality Time

If your love language is quality time, you’ll want the undivided attention of your partner. Put the phones, TV, and work aside at least once a week to adequately love your partner. Spending alone time with those who have this love language makes them feel special and loved. Avoid long periods of time without walks together or weekend getaways. Additionally, avoid cancelled dates or not being able to listen and hold space when your partner is speaking to you.

Acts of Service

Taking action is the best way to show your partner love with this love language. Help them clean around the house, make them breakfast, and ask them if they need help with other repairs or maintenance. Avoid ignoring your partner’s requests while helping others, laziness, and lacking follow-through on tasks.

Words of affirmation and physical touch may be the most common types of love languages among entrepreneurs. Though they are extremely busy, there is always time for a hug and words of encouragement and appreciation.

Entrepreneur Love Languages When it Comes to Your Team

Entrepreneur CEO praising teammates during business meeting
Entrepreneur CEO praising teammates during business meeting

Just like there are five love languages when it comes to your interpersonal relationships, there are love languages when it comes to entrepreneurs and their teammates.

Recognition

Whether it’s a physical gift or words of affirmation, let your team members know how important they are and how grateful and appreciative you are of their hard work. You can do this publicly (in front of other team members) or privately.

Conversations and Feedback

Ask your team their opinions about your ideas and vision. They’re working with you, so it is likely they want to be involved. You can simple ask: “What are your thoughts on this?”

Listening

Holding space is necessary for all people whether they work with your or you are friends with this person. Listen to what your team member has to say. Do not wait to respond. Listen to exactly what they are saying, all judgments set aside. Take notes if necessary. When they are finished speaking, give them feedback. Entrepreneurs value genuineness above everything else and this is showing your genuine interest.

What is you entrepreneurial love language? Let us know down in the comments.

This article originally published on GREY Journal.