Respect is the foundation of appreciation

“Respect for ourselves guides our morals, respect for others guides our manners.” – Laurence Sterne, Irish novelist

Why is it that one of the first things our parents taught us about manners – saying “Thank you!” out of respect for anyone who gives us compliments, courtesy, things, etc. – is so difficult? Showing appreciation for the people around us at work and home seems like it should be simple. However, employee recognition in the workplace is often one of the lowest priorities. Why? Because it turns out that most advice on the topic from human resource and talent management professionals can sound more complex and expensive than managers and executive leaders have time or resources to spare. 

According to research reported by the popular motivation company, Successories , “69% of employees say they would work harder if they were better recognized.” 

The problem is that differing personalities like different types of recognition. For small offices where interpersonal connections tend to be stronger, it is fairly simple to learn if an employee would prefer a vocal kudos at a group meeting or a private handwritten note or a set a free tickets to a baseball game. When managing dozens to hundreds or thousands of employees, it is seemingly impossible to sort out what types of recognition make the best impression on each and every individual. Keeping track of that information, accessing and using it at the right time and funding it can be overwhelming without the right tools and team to handle it. Most managers and executive leaders either choose to not make employee recognition a priority at all or skim by with inconsistent and ineffective efforts.  Unfortunately, neither of those choices are solving anything. 

There is a lot of data available to back up the problem of the appreciation void in our workplaces. According to the research collected by Julie Winkle Giuliani:

  • Badgeville research stated that 79% of those who quit their jobs cite lack of appreciation as the main reason.
  • Wichita State University research reported that 81% of employees seldom or never received public praise, 76% seldom or never received written thanks from their managers, and 58% rarely or never received praise from their manager.
  • Gallups’s global research finds that employees around the world consistently express dissatisfaction with feedback and recognition.
  • Author Shawn Achor of “Before Happiness” reports that just one piece of praise given to a team daily can increase productivity by 30%. His study of the relationship between happiness and success globally echoes that cited by the company Successories. 

Giuliani shares her finding that other studies positively correlate recognition with retention, talent acquisition/recruiting, and engagement. In other words, our parents were right once again. Saying “Thank you” does matter … a lot more than we ever thought.

A great place to start is as simple as it sounds. It is all about practicing respect for others. When someone does something well or above and beyond expectations, go ahead and verbally tell them you appreciate their effort as soon and as sincerely as possible. That respectful habit alone can make a big difference. If implementing an appreciation and recognition program that provides additional tangible awards is of interest to you, contact us. Balance Concierge can streamline the entire process to save you money and time. In addition to helping managers recognize employees, our simple online tool and Preferred Local Networks can help your team members easily recognize each other. 

“Thank you for your interest in Balance Concierge!”