Employees who feel valued at work are often happier, more productive and less likely to look for other employment opportunities. There are many ways to show employees how much you value them, from recognition programs and financial incentives to simple gestures, like listening and acting on feedback. Knowing the importance of valued employees and how to show appreciation can create a strong company culture.
What is the importance of feeling valued at work?
Making employees feel valued in the work they do is important in business and can ultimately improve the environment of a workplace, the individual and team performance and help an organization reach its goals. Showing employees how much you value them can:
Build trust: Employees who know you value their input, feedback and ideas often have trust in leadership and confidence in a company.
Raise productivity: If employees know you appreciated and value their work, they often continue to work hard, strive for new goals and get invested in the company’s accomplishments.
Increase morale: When you take the time to get to know employees, let them contribute and show you value them, team, department and company morale typically increases. Often the more positive people feel about their work environment, the better their output.
Reduce turnover: When you value employees and demonstrate it, they often have higher job satisfaction rates and pursue continued employment or advancement opportunities and refer other job candidates rather than seeking other employment. This can help lower turnover and increase retention rates.
Improve brand reputation: Being known as a company that values employees can help you attract highly qualified job candidates and possibly new clients or customers who want to support a business with a strong reputation as a good place to work.
Provide meaningful work
This aspect can be different for each individual employee based on their likes, wants and goals, though employees typically perform well when they know the work they do daily is valuable and matters. Consider highlighting teams to help others understand the work each group or department does, whether through company emails and a newsletter or by talking about achievements during meetings. Also look for ways to give meaningful work directly to your employees, like offering a project lead position to an employee who aspires to earn a managerial promotion, for example.
Prioritize a work-life balance
There is often a correlation between work-life balance and both employee performance and job satisfaction, so prioritizing this element of the workplace can create impactful results. Maintaining a healthy and balanced work environment can reduce stress, prevent burnout, save money and promote a considerate company culture.
Start an employee recognition program
Employee recognition programs are a great way to recognize the work done by teams and individuals throughout the year. Consider asking current employees the type of recognition they desire most, like starting an employee of the month club or holding an annual rewards ceremony event, for example. Other ideas can include financial incentives or earned time off.
Celebrating achievements can keep teams and employees engaged, so consider recognizing both large and small work accomplishments, like:
Earning high customer satisfaction ratings
Reaching quarterly sales goals
Onboarding new team members
Launching new services or products
Securing new clients or renewing contracts
Successfully transitioning products, procedures or programs
You can publicly acknowledge these achievements, highlight them in company-wide correspondence, or share a hand-written thank you note to employees as a personal and thoughtful gesture.
Offer professional development and learning opportunities
Investing in your team shows you value them. Cross-training between departments also is an effective and cost efficient way to let employees learn and discover new skills and formal or casual mentorship programs also offer employees support and guidance. Aspire offer a great range of short courses designed to support your employees professional development that you can browse here.
Make time for the team
Employees often feel the most valued when spending time directly with a leader or manager outside of normal job responsibilities. Treat them to a coffee break or take them out to lunch to get to know them better and hear their ideas about the workplace. When doing performance reviews, offer genuine feedback, explain areas of concern and leave time for questions rather than holding a quick meeting. Also, even spending a few minutes a day talking with the team or individuals can establish rapport and connections that make them feel valued as both people and employees.
Celebrate milestones, anniversaries and birthdays
Do something special for employee birthdays, work anniversaries, project milestones and holidays like Employee Appreciation Day. Whether it is coffee, cake or a meal, an extra day off, a company-wide announcement, a decorated desk or monetary gift, acknowledging the important dates across your team is a way to show you value them as individuals. Simple gestures rewarding employees for their dedication and loyalty to an organisation can make them feel valued.
Ask, acknowledge and act on feedback
Engaging with employees involves allowing them a venue to share feedback and then acknowledging and acting on the input. It shows you are open to ideas from any level of the company and respect and value the input from those you work with. The opportunity for feedback can give employees a sense of purpose and often the ideas generated can lead to improvements and promote a good company culture.