Give thanks! Let your employees know they are appreciated

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Tis the season of giving! Giving back, giving gifts, and giving thanks. You might be focused on doing these things at home or in your community, but you should also be bringing this to the workplace. Especially the part about giving thanks. Why?

Well, let’s list a few statistics that might make you listen a little closer (HR Technologist):

  • A whopping 63% of employees who are recognized are very unlikely to look for a new job
  • Almost half of the American workforce would increase energy and productivity at work if they were recognized more often
  • Half of employees don’t feel that their rewards strategy is aligned to organizational goals
  • Low recognition and engagement are driving 44% of employees to switch jobs

Now that your ears are perked up, let’s cover how you can give thanks in the workplace and make the people around you feel truly appreciated and valued:

  1. Communicate with employees and colleagues regularly and intentionally.
    By regularly, I’m not saying multiple times a day or even every single day or week. You can make that call for yourself, depending on your relationships in the workplace, but make a point to certainly communicate more than once a year when it’s annual review time or when Joe is named “Employee of the Month”.
  2. Customize your language and actions to each recipient.
    Know your audience! We tend to show appreciation in the way we prefer to receive it, but be considerate of each recipient’s preference. Pam in Marketing might prefer a coffee date, whereas Bill in IT might want a nice email of gratitude. Taking time to be thoughtful in your methods of appreciation will ensure your appreciation is well received.
  3. Personalize and individualize appreciation.
    For the sake of time and energy, you may recognize a whole group or team for their work. While this is a positive thing to do, the impact will be much greater if you communicate with individuals how they are specifically appreciated. For bonus points, recognize groups/teams but also single out individuals for their efforts and actions.
  4. Be genuine and authentic.
    People are smart and will immediately catch on if they sense inauthenticity in your actions and words. This is where the saying, “If you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all”, really comes into play. If you’re going to recognize employees or colleagues, make sure it’s genuine and that they know it’s genuine.

Challenge yourself this week to show appreciation to five people within your organization. It will make you feel good, it will make them feel good, and it will benefit the organization, driving engagement, retention and productivity.

Cited sources: What it will take to really appreciate your employees in 2016

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