‘Tis the Season for Employee Appreciation

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Holiday time!It’s that time of the year! The leaves have turned, the air is brisk, and sweaters are no longer optional. With November comes the spirit of giving thanks and showing undeniable appreciation for all the good life has to offer.

All that said, there’s one thing that is for sure: a calendar should never be the reason you show your employees appreciation. No, not scheduled raises or goal parties, but real, genuine gratitude.

Anyone who has ever worked for a manager knows that just hearing a positive remark on a simple job is enough to skyrocket engagement while negative, non-constructive feedback results in downward spirals. The best part is, simply noticing a job well done motivates 86 percent of employees and lowers turnover rates. Recognition is important for a well-functioning company, and you can’t and shouldn’t ignore it any longer.

Lower Turnover

Bersin by Deloitte reports that companies who give employees recognition experience 31 percent lower voluntary turnover rates than those that don’t. Is that so hard to believe? We, as humans, are more likely to help those who realize how much work we do for them. An organization that solicits feedback and is all around more transparent with both positive recognition and constructive criticism experiences higher levels of engagement.

  • Businesses with effective communication are 50 percent more likely to have lower turnover.
  • 72 percent of highly engaged employees know and understand the importance of their role within the company.
  • Still, 60 percent of employees feel they are not given enough feedback from superiors.

Boosts Confidence

Think back to your first day of working at your current job. If you didn’t feel at least a little nervous, then you are unlike most people. No matter how sure or unsure you are of your skills, starting something new is ridiculously nerve-wracking. Even after months or years of working in one position, employees will find themselves doing something for the first time. This is especially true for recruiters and hiring managers, who are constantly sitting across the desk from someone new.

The only way to become more comfortable in such situations is to test the waters. Recognition will boost self-confidence and leave employees feeling more apt to take the initiative on projects.

  • 71 percent of employees feel that appreciation by a direct supervisor is the most impactful.
  • 91 percent of employees feel positive feedback results in improved employee performance.
  • 31 percent of employees believe the most motivational thing an employer could do is include more praise and highlight their value.

Heightened Productivity  

An engaged employee is a productive employee. Organizations who have high engagement rates bring in 2.5 times more revenue than those who don’t.

  • 84 percent of employees feel recognizing their accomplishments improves their organizational objectives.
  • 77 percent of employees would work harder if they felt more recognized.
  • Companies that invest in incentive and recognition programs can see as much as a 23 percent increase in revenue

Working in a small company has its perks. For instance, my CEO works about 10 feet away from her employees’ desks. What does this mean for our engagement? It means that every day, on our way out the door, we hear our superior shout a sincere, “Thanks for your work today!” Every day — and even if she’s left before us in a hurry — she thanks us. The single, simple statement takes no more than five seconds and leaves my coworkers and I feeling important to her success.

While a strategic and structured recognition program is probably more effective, lack of budget or C-level support should never stop you from giving thanks. In fact, over a third of employees believe peer-to-peer recognition is more important and that their happiness depends more on how they feel about their coworkers than their managers. Whether you’re a leader in your department or not, remember to show your appreciation for the hard work of others. ‘Tis the season!


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Marissa Litty is the marketing assistant at Red Branch Media, a marketing and advertising firm that serves the Human Resources and Recruiting markets. Red Branch Media has grown from a simple consultancy to a full-service B2B marketing agency. Litty brings experience in event planning, design and advertising and enjoys writing about technology and mobile.
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