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Five steps to real employee appreciation

Shawn Mike

Many company owners feel betrayed when their old employees leave without a reason. After all, they provided them with the best money and opportunities, so what went wrong? For the majority of the employees, money and opportunities do not matter if they feel undervalued in their workplace. Contributor Shawn Mike – Writer and Blogger.

If you choose to look on the bright side of this situation, turnovers can be great since it provides companies with a chance to train new people and reap benefits from their skills. However, if the entrepreneurs still refuse to change their unappreciative ways, the newly hired individuals can quickly move on. Keeping this in mind, here are a few ways through which entrepreneurs can show gratitude and make their employees feel appreciated!  

Listen to Your Employees
When your employees come to you to discuss their problems and you are constantly thinking about the next meeting or how to edit a PDF file, then you are doomed to lose their interest in your company. 

Listening to your employees may seem like the easiest thing to achieve. However, you will be surprised by how little entrepreneurs are willing to listen or take feedback from their valued employees. According to the professional workers in Canada and the US, 64 percent of the employees identified their boss’ unwilling to listen as their biggest problem. 

More often than not, employees are hesitant to share their feedback or provide any sort of input. Once they become confident with the passage of time, they would like to have their opinions valued. This requires major changes in how one operates its business. Also, the owners need to learn to take a step back and let the employee accomplish the task however they like. 

Instead of telling employees about their job duties, you need to start taking in their feedback about the best way of achieving any task at hand. 

Recognise and Appreciate Great Work
Everyone, from the ordinary clerk to the heavily experienced manager, likes to have their efforts not only recognised but appreciated as well. Recognition and appreciation matters since they help employees identify even the smallest roles that they have played in the company’s success. 

Keeping this in mind, a slight pat on the back, a few encouraging words or organising a formal event to appreciate the efforts of employees can work wonders. This is because when employees feel appreciated they make it their responsibility to work in the interest of the company so that it could be a success story. Additionally, recognising and appreciating employee’s efforts can be fruitful since it: 

  • Encourages engagement and boosts overall performance. 
  • Increases loyalty and helps in retaining the best talent. When efforts are recognised, employees form loyalty and rarely investigate other work opportunities. 
  • Builds a work environment that is supportive and nudges the employees to navigate areas that are usually outside their capabilities. 

Host Office Parties
When it comes to office parties, not all the employees are enthusiastic about them. This is because the party is organised by the employers themselves or they assign it to someone who does not take other people’s consideration into their account. If unchecked, this kind of behaviour can deter other employees from partaking into extracurricular activities. 

Additionally, throwing a major party should not be your only goal. Instead, you need to try and make the event as employee-friendly as possible. With that being said, you can also organise surprise events and hand out seasonal gifts to show your appreciation. 

Moving on, never charge for participation and if the attendance is voluntary, then do not hold it against someone for not showing up at the party. This is because holding a grudge against your employee can force them to find other opportunities. 

Organise Volunteering Event with the Team
With Global Warming and climate change, more and more people are becoming conscious of their surroundings. According to the Millennial Employee Engagement Study from Cone Communications, 83 percent of the employees would be loyal to their company if they helped them in social or other environmental issues. 

Additionally, the love for environmental issues is not one-sided as many of the employers have now assigned VTO (Volunteer Time Off) which are paid holidays. This initiative encourages the employees to be grateful and give back to their respective communities. Also, with this, employees have full control over which volunteering organisation they want to work with!

So, if you are not already providing volunteering opportunities, then you should seriously consider it. If you already have a program in place, then attach some extra benefits with it so employees feel compelled to serve the community. This can be a win-win situation for you as your employees would view you as a compassionate boss and would be more than willing to serve you better. 

Send Cards on Various Occasions
Nothing makes a person feel appreciated better than a thoughtful card! Sending a card when one is not expected is not only a nice gesture but it also helps in forming a strong bond between the employer and the employee. So, take a break, write a couple of cards and send them to your employees. You do not need to be overly-expressive, a simple ‘thank you’ or other similar notes expressing gratitude would be sufficient. 

You can also promote this activity among the employees. You can reserve a few hours, you can invite various other departments or you can simply order them online and distribute them among employees. Whatever you do, just never force your employee to take part in such activities. All of this should come naturally and if someone does not want to exchange cards, let them be. The goal of this activity is to promote a healthy environment, not to create a tense or toxic one. 

Appreciating your employees and rewarding their good behavior is not an easy task. However, completely avoiding it just because it is difficult can end up costing your company some great employees. This is why it is necessary to create opportunities that make your employees feel rightly appreciated. 

Focusing on the mental health of your employees would not only promote loyalty but it will also make them respect you and your company more. If you successfully achieve a level of happiness among your employees, they will be ready to accomplish anything for your company from massive challenges to mundane tasks! 

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