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Employee Recognition and Appreciation
- 57% of employees have left a job because of their manager, according to new statistics from DDI, a leadership consulting firm.
- In the U.S., 82% of Americans do not feel their manager regularly recognizes their contributions according to a survey conducted by leadership training company OGO Lead
- 35% or more of the employees report that lack of recognition at work is the biggest hindrance to their productivity, according to TJinsite’s poll.
Lack of recognition and appreciation hurts
Scarce recognition takes a severe toll on morale, productivity, retention, engagement, and profitability.
- Businesses lose $11 billion to staff turnover each year.
- 70% of employees are disengaged at work.
- 20% of employees who are “disengaged” or “extremely disengaged” cause a company’s most significant productivity losses
Appreciation and Recognition Helps
Appreciating your employees plays a significant role in job satisfaction, engagement and employee retention.
Unfortunately, managers often see “appreciation” as frivolous; it’s a soft skill in the hard business world. As a result, at least 22% of senior decision-makers don’t believe recognition and thanks at work influence staff retention.
Your employees don’t agree. 70% of employees say that motivation and morale improve “massively” when managers say thank you more often.
Not only that, studies find a direct correlation between employee retention and feeling valued. People who don’t feel valued look for a better place to work.
Your people don’t just want a paycheck; they also want appreciation.
Recognition and appreciation: Low Cost-High Impact
“The deepest principle of human nature is a craving to be appreciated. William James, American psychologist, and philosopher
- 41% of companies that use peer-to-peer recognition have seen positive increases in customer satisfaction (from Globoforce)
- Companies with recognition programs that are highly effective at improving employee engagement have a 31% lower voluntary turnover (from Bersin & Associates)
- Workplace Trends Report finds that recognition programs yield 50 % higher sales, 27 percent higher profits, and 21 percent better retention.
- According to a CareerBuilder survey, 50 % of employees believe turnover would go down if managers simply recognized their efforts more frequently.
Appreciation and recognition: not a superficial nicety
Instead, it is the essence of a positive business culture because:
- Your employees want to know that they are appreciated.
- They don’t just assume their work is appreciated.
- People don’t naturally intuit that they are valued.
- You need to tell them.
Brene Brown: “It’s not joy that makes us grateful, it’s gratitude that makes us joyful.”
The Basics Steps of Recognition and Appreciation
1. Specific. That is to say, recognition means more when it’s linked to a particular accomplishment. Connecting
appreciation to a particular behavior encourages strong performance.
2. Timely. The most meaningful recognition is delivered promptly. In fact, the longer it takes, the less
authentic it feels.
3. Attentive. Obviously, acknowledging grand accomplishments is vital to success. However, the small every day,
“thank-you” can motivate employees as much if not more.
4. Meaningful. Research shows that motivation doesn’t always require cash. People are unique when it comes to
giving and receiving recognition.
5. Connection. When recognized, employees see that their company values them. In addition, they connect
their contributions to the overall success of the company.
“I can live for two months on a good compliment,” said Mark Twain, the American author.
Recognition is what you do. Appreciation is who you are.
Become more Resilient, use this link to Amy’s Resilience resource guide, A Resilience Resource Guide
Your employees need acknowledgment and engagement to perform at their best. Unfortunately, most employees don’t get enough of either. For example, Gallup data revealed that only one in three U.S. workers received recognition for doing good work According to another study, only 45% of people feel appreciated by their companies.
Managers sometimes look at recognition as a task, whereas employees see recognition as a meaningful moment.
How can we demonstrate that we truly see and value our employees? 🤔#OCTWebinar #EmployeeRecognition pic.twitter.com/qqdkjEf1Dt
— O.C. Tanner (@octanner) June 24, 2020
Employee Appreciation ideas from companies
”Bring in donuts or have a pizza party at lunch on the company dime. People … like to be fed. This type of reward will not only bring your office together. [and] … strengthen their interpersonal relationships, but it will also give them all the feeling of being appreciated.” Tyler Butler, founder, and CEO of 11Eleven Consulting
2. Use social media to express your gratitude
“We recognize our employees on their birthdays and service anniversaries on our social channels. Each post will include a photo and something that highlights that employee’s contribution to the organization or an interesting fact that their co-workers and others may not know about them.” Michelle Cardin, marketing director of Shawmut Communications Group
3. Give and receive ‘props.
“At Badger Maps, we like to show appreciation on a regular basis and recognize employees for their work. The way we do this is that we all set aside some time at the end of the day every Friday to give props at our ‘TGIF meeting.’ Anyone on the team can give ‘props’ to anyone else on the team, which fosters an atmosphere of appreciation, respect, and teamwork. It’s a time to recognize co-workers for their accomplishments and contributions that week in front of the group and show them respect for working hard and having done something great.” Steven Benson, founder, and CEO of Badger Maps
4. Give employees extra time off.
“I think the most valuable way to recognize an employee today is through time â€“ that is, time off, time to do something else besides work. It could be family, a hobby, a charity, or a short vacation. I don’t think it needs to be routine or regular and has the most value when it’s unexpected.” Mark S. Valenti, president, and CEO of The Sextant Group
5. Encourage feedback.
“We distribute a quarterly pulse survey that allows them to give us [anonymous] feedback about the company at a macro level. We ask a set of 15 questions around teamwork, leadership, career growth, etc. each quarter to measure movement on any dimension. Then we give them three open text boxes to answer the questions: What are we doing well? What do we need to improve? What else is on your mind? We get our results each month with an average participation rate of about 75 percent and have more than 225 lines of data from the responses to those three open-ended questions. This allows all employees to feel heard and want to contribute to making our company win.” Mai Ton, vice president of human resources at White Ops
How to show appreciation during COVID shut-downs
- Communicate frequently: Remember, information about the coronavirus changes rapidly. Make sure employees are kept up-to-date on what is going on within your organization and any changes happening.
- Mitigate risks: Employees need to know their safety is taken seriously. Whether that means providing face masks or other protective gear, hand-washing stations, or enforcing six-foot social distancing measures with customers, employees need to know you are taking steps to mitigate risks. Employers should also provide training to their employees, so they know the new procedures.
- Be flexible and loosen restriction: With daycares and schools closed and other significant changes happening to employees, employers need to be understanding and flexible. For example, allow employees who can work from home to do so. In addition, ensure employees know they can and should stay home when sick without any consequences, and trust employees when they say they aren’t feeling well.
- Send thank-you notes: Send personalized thank-you notes to your employees, so they know they are appreciated and are doing a good job. This will go a long way in maintaining or improving employee morale, especially during a pandemic.
- Provide public praise: Celebrate employee accomplishments, such as when they’ve met team or company goals, by giving them praise in front of their peers and executives.
- Give extra time off: Award employees with a half or full-day off that they can use later or leave a shift early.
- Hand out gift cards: Give out gift cards to restaurants, grocery stores, or a type of service to your employees. This is a great way to support local businesses and show your appreciation to employees.
- Offer company swag: Gift company apparel, bags, pens, and other swag to your employees.
- Provide food and drinks: Employers can provide lunch, snacks, and beverages to employees in a safe manner.
- Connect as a team: Whether it is a video conference call or a group chat, keeping employees connected to each other and the business is essential.
Simple Appreciation Ideas that cost nothing from Forbes
1. A sincere word of thanks costs nothing and is very effective.
2. Post a thank you note on their door in their honor.
3. Throw a pizza party or cake party in their honor.
4. Create a simple “ABCD” card to be given when someone goes “Above the Call of Duty.”
5. Write about them in a company-wide email.
6. Give a long-lunch, extra break, or comp time.
7. Honor them at the start of the next staff meeting (recognize someone at the beginning of every staff meeting).
8. Post a “thank you” sign in the lobby with their name on it.
9. Gift them flowers, a book, or other small gifts.
10. Invite them to a one-on-one lunch.
11. Give them a card with lottery tickets inside.
12. Give them a card with movie tickets inside.
More ideas to show appreciation
13. Give them a card with a coffee gift certificate.
14. Have the entire team sign a framed photo or certificate of
15. Arrange for a boss several levels up to stop by to say thanks.
16. Send a thank-you note or gift basket to their spouse.
17. Arrange to have their car washed.
18. Arrange to have their home cleaned.
19. Let them bring their pet to work.
20. Buy a dozen donuts and announce to the department that they are in
the honoree’s office, they should stop by to say hi and get one.
21. Feature them in the company newsletter.
22. Pick an unusual or funny object and place it on their desk for a week.
23. Let them dress casually for a day.
24. Have the entire team honor them with a standing ovation at the start
of the next staff meeting.
25. Offer to swap a task with them for a day or week
Showing appreciation isn’t just about the Bottom line
Appreciation and Recognition
- Makes others happy: to feel appreciated is a basic human need at work and at home.
- Creates happiness in you: showing appreciation makes you feel fulfilled because you’ve made someone’s life better.
- Boosts Morale: when its timely, unexpected, tangible, personal, and public.
- Motivates others: Giving recognition inspires greatness and often causes people to go the extra mile.
- Builds Relationships: by making us kinder, more social, and more trusting.
- Shows respect: noticing and thanking someone’s accomplishments shows you value their contribution and their time.
- Increases your effectiveness: employees who give or get appreciation experience a significant increase in work results. When you feel good, you do good.
Napoleon showed appreciation and recognition
Napoleon was considered a superb natural leader of men. Because of this, he understood that his own success depended on the men who fought for him. Obviously, his army was too vast to know every man. Instead, he created a technique to circumvent this challenge.
To begin with, before visiting a regiment, he’d request the name of a soldier who’d not received the credit he deserved. Napoleon would learn as much as possible about the soldier. For example, he’s discover his birthplace, the names of his family, his battle exploits, etc.
Next, while reviewing his troops, the colonel would point out the soldier. Napoleon would stop to greet the man. He’d ask about his family and compliment him on his bravery. After chatting about old campaigns, he’d pin a medal on the soldier.
It was a thoughtful and kind gesture that worked. As a result, the other soldiers would say, “He cares. Our leader knows us. He remembers us and care about knows our families and appreciates that we serve.”
Recognition is important. Expressing appreciation matters.
Being told you are appreciated is one of the simplest and most uplifting things you can hear.
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