It’s an important question. Don’t let yourself be the workplace version of the poor saps standing in line for self checkout at 5 p.m. on Valentine’s Day, holding a sad bouquet of wilted roses. But there’s a more important question out there: How do you make sure your employees feel recognized for their effort when they head home for the weekend, not only this Friday, but every Friday?
Yes, it’s a good idea to throw a little party in recognition of your employees’ hard work. But it should be extra recognition — something that spices up an appreciation employees feel all year long. In this blog, we’ll discuss how a culture of appreciation fuels worker engagement and boosts retention, insulating your business from the forces of Great Resignation and the post-pandemic world.
Disengagement is a growing trend
Before we unpack how to make employee appreciation a hallmark of your office, let’s spend a little time understanding the realities of the American workplace. First, understand that employee engagement is up. This is good news. In 2018, Gallup reported that 34% of workers said they were engaged. As of this year, that figure rose by two points to 36%. There’s some bad news, too: Active disengagement is also on the rise. Gallup reported in 2018 that 13% of workers were actively disengaged; that figure is also up by two points this year.
Gallup summed it up like this: “Historically, Gallup research has found substantial differences in intentions to change employers as a function of the quality of the work environment. The importance of this finding is magnified in the current workforce’s ‘great resignation,’ which is possibly just getting started.”
Let me put that in simpler terms. Employees are more likely to jump ship when their work life sucks. Among Gallup participants who said they were actively disengaged this year, a whopping 74% said they were actively looking for new gigs or watching for openings. The same was true of 55% of unengaged employees and 30% of engaged ones. Yikes.
Getting to know you
If workers are more inclined to leave their jobs when they’re unengaged, the next question is obvious: How do we boost engagement?
Workplace experts tackled this question exactly in October for the Harvard Business Review. They concluded that employers increase engagement when they help employees connect what they do to what they care about.
This task requires sustained effort. It also requires a deep knowledge of employees. Consider your rockstar employees: Do you know what fuels them? Do you know what motivates them to show up each day and do their best? Do you know what challenges them?
Don’t limit employee appreciation to one day
Here’s my challenge to you: Plan your appreciation day — your cupcakes, your gift cards, your free vacation days — but put aside extra time to strategize how your organization will take appreciation to a new level.
The research pulls no punches. Employees will delve into their jobs when they feel connected to their work, when they sense they’re contributing to something bigger. Get to know your employees, build a culture that communicates how much you value them, and reap the rewards all year long.
To find out how PeopleBest can serve your team, book a demo and set up a time to chat with one of our specialists.
PeopleBest is a revolutionary, simple and powerful way to capture the exact ‘DNA of success’ inside people, teams and companies.