“Flattery is from the teeth out. Sincere appreciation is from the heart out.” — Dale Carnegie
Some folks are just in it for the recognition. I can recall talking with someone who went above and beyond, bragged on it to her supervisor, and then told me she was upset when her supervisor all but said “Do you want a cookie?” It’s not that the supervisor wasn’t impressed but it was obvious that the employee was just looking for a pat on the back.
Do work that is worthy of recognition but work that expects none. While we all deserve credit for good work, if you do it regularly enough, don’t expect a pat on the back each time. Just find joy in knowing that you’re doing something exceptional.
On the other hand, if you are doing great work consistently and are never shown appreciation, it’s time to start looking elsewhere. A manager that doesn’t work to motivate those on his/her team is a terrible leader and doesn’t deserve a team following his/her guidance.
Make doing it for the right reasons a priority.