It’s safe to say that employee appreciation is critical to reducing your turnover rate. In fact, according to Forbes, around 66% of employees would leave if they felt under-appreciated in their workplace. The same study found that this number is likely to rise. When the study considered only millennials, 76% of the workforce agreed that they would seek employment elsewhere if they didn’t feel appreciated. You can avoid low employee morale and even increase employee productivity by making an effort to show employees that you value their work. Let’s talk about six ways that you can give your employees the appreciation and recognition they want and deserve.
1. Give Recognition for Outstanding Work
When a project or task is completed on time and exceeds expectations, reach out to the team members involved and let them know that they did a great job. This can be a simple, “Thank you for taking the time to…” or it can be a larger gesture, like an employee appreciation gift or a specific award. Try to give recognition relatively quickly; your words won’t seem as sincere if you hold off for a week. Verbal recognition is the most effective, but a thoughtful email will also do the trick.
2. Provide the Tools for Success
Another way to show your team that you appreciate them is by promoting their success at every turn by providing excellent support and training. Almost nothing is more frustrating to an employee than being assigned a task that they haven’t been prepared for. Not all projects need a dedicated brief or training, but your employees should be well-equipped for success within their roles. How accessible are your employee FAQs, software documentation, and training videos? How quickly can team members get in contact with their manager if they have a question or run into an issue?
3. Be Present During Conversations With Your Team
First, always address your employees by their names and show interest in what they have to say. Avoid looking at a screen and respond with a question, a comment, or by elaborating rather than a simple “Yes” or “No.” One-on-one conversations are the perfect opportunity to highlight the successes of individuals, as opposed to groups. When assigning a new task, for example, tell the team member why you think they will be a good fit in addition to briefing her about the details of the job.
4. Encourage and Support Growth and Skill-Building
Show your employees that you’re willing to invest time and resources into helping them expand their skillset. Consider granting company-wide access to professional development courses related to your industry. There are many high-quality, online learning platforms that you can partner with to bring courses to your employees. Alternatively, send them to a conference or allow them to attend a special meeting.
If you’re not yet open to paying for education, ask them to take on new, higher-level responsibilities. Be sure that you provide them with the tools to succeed along with the opportunity for growth. When you assign an employee a new, challenging task, you’re showing them that you believe in their skills and ability to see the assignment through.
5. Share Testimonials from Clients and Other Workers
Don’t forget to relay positive feedback from others! Employees should receive regular recognition form their direct managers, but they will appreciate feedback from clients and coworkers as well. If an employee is mentioned in a particularly glowing review or email, forward it to the employee. You’re showing them that they’re valuable within your company and that you’re taking notice.
6. Listen to Their Suggestions
Be willing to listen to suggestions your employees have about products, services, and policies. Set up a system that will allow them to submit suggestions. Consider creating a general suggestion box or email inbox for this feedback. Some employers generate especially helpful employee feedback by providing a prompt each week or each month. For example, you could ask, “What did you find most helpful during your onboarding training?” Giving your team the opportunity to voice their opinion shows them that you genuinely care about their experience within the company.