Every business leader dreams of having a company that runs like clockwork. One complete with the perfect team of highly dependable, timely and responsive, honest and hard-working employees driven by the organization’s mission and goals. Such a vision may seem impossible for every business to reach. Yet, the key to creating such a dream team is to consider a simple question: What makes employees feel valued?
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In today’s hyper-competitive business landscape, many employees have suffered from burnout, poor morale and productivity and job dissatisfaction. This has led to heightened employee turnover rates for many companies. When asked about how the pandemic has changed their feelings regarding work and life, over 50% of workers have said that they have questioned the value and purpose at work, along with expectations toward their employer.
While an employee engagement survey by Lattice has shown that the need to feel a sense of belonging is somewhat generational, others point out that employees are more likely to be engaged, productive, and dedicated to a company’s growth when they feel valued.
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If you want to add more value and retain top talent, this article will discuss tips to make employees feel valued. This ultimately improves workflow and overall success from within.
1. Share employee stories
Employee stories have been found to be one of the most effective strategies for building an appealing work culture. By providing opportunities for employees to share their work and experiences candidly, you allow them to drive the narrative. Plus, it provides future candidates with a more interpersonal perspective on what it is like to work for the company.
Highlighting employees’ work also helps them establish a sense of identity. It allows greater connections with co-workers, managers and customers, forming a positive work environment and culture. At the same time, sharing employee stories across media platforms organically builds a strong company brand identity. It also builds authenticity and connectivity with target audiences. Essentially creating a symbiotic relationship that leaders and employees alike highly value.
2. Give regular, constructive feedback
A 2018 Harris Interactive Survey for Glassdoor found that “67% of employers believe retention rates would be higher if candidates had a clearer picture of what to expect about working at a company before taking the job.” For employees, this often includes the expectation of management valuing communication and professional growth among its workforce.
Though recognition for your hard work feels good, people also want to know how to improve. Or, they want to know where they fall short to know they are on the right track. Providing regular, constructive feedback each month is a great opportunity to speak one-on-one with employees and whole teams.
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At the same time, while regular meetings with in-office and remote workers are a great way to deliver consistent feedback opportunities, leaders should also consider feedback sessions to discuss business strategies and performance or quarterly get-togethers to share new ideas and educational experiences.
3. Say “you are valued here” with corporate gift giving
While gift-giving during major achievement or professional (or personal) milestones is valued, employees feel greater respect and appreciation when they are thought of in other moments. Simple gestures can make an even greater impact during distress, providing employees with a sense of appreciation and care when they are out sick or on medical leave.
While a generic gift basket is always an option, you can also opt for more personalized care packages that will really make them feel treasured. Along with your wishes for a speedy recovery, companies like Spoonful of Comfort offer a variety of get-well specialty gift baskets that include delicious soups, desserts, and comforting items. They also allow you to create a customized gift basket or care package that fits the needs of your employee or corporate team.
4. Support social shoutouts and events
Particularly in today’s common hybrid and remote work environments, employees often feel disconnected from their colleagues. In turn, it creates a disengaged team and fragmented culture. According to a recent study, companies only see 15% of employees being actively engaged due to unhappiness and dissatisfaction in their work – that is, lack of recognition.
However, businesses with employees recognized for their dedication to company goals and consistent motivation in their work, deliver a 202% increase in performance outcomes. It is great to express appreciation for big accomplishments throughout the year. But also, praising small contributions and achievements can be just as valuable to an employee.
5. Invite an open door policy
Having an open-door policy is an effective way to encourage open communication and feedback. This also includes discussion about any questions, complaints, suggestions and challenges employees are facing.
Former CEO of Xerox, Anne M. Mulcahy, once said, “Employees who believe that management is concerned about them as a whole person – not just an employee – are more productive, satisfied and fulfilled. Satisfied employees mean satisfied customers, which leads to profitability.”
You want to give them the opportunity to speak up at any time. Also, allow them to build a responsive, transparent, and trusting environment. At the same time, set certain parameters around the open-door policy. This way you value and respect everyone’s time. Additionally, managers actively listen to what their employees want to say.
6. Encourage professional growth
While you want to do your best to retain talent, employees should also feel free to expand their professional growth. Even if they move on to other green pastures in the future. Accomplishing this comes in many ways. They include educational incentive programs, a global benefits and rewards platform, or offering company training for career advancement. When they feel supported in their professional development, they are more likely to work hard for your company. Additionally, they gain valuable experiences along the way.
At the end of the day, ensuring your employees feel valued will build a culture of appreciation. Take the time to express your gratitude to your workforce and see what a difference it can make.