Feeling valued and appreciated at work (or, for that matter, anywhere) is a powerful emotion. It has a profound and far-reaching impact on shaping and strengthening the entire organization’s culture. While monetary compensation and benefits contribute, it’s things like trust, responsibility, meaningful & purposeful interactions, and authentic & sincere recognition for one’s unique point of view, talent & contributions that truly make one feel valued at work. These go a long way in improving engagement, inspiring innovation, enhancing productivity, and, most of all, building loyalty among an organization’s most significant brand ambassadors – its employees. Irrespective of the level, department, function, age group, gender, or part of the world, all employees want to be recognized and feel valued. In fact, ‘appreciation for my work’ has been listed as the number one desired attribute in new jobs by job seekers across the globe.
So, what does a valued employee or team member bring to the table? An American Psychological Association survey found that feeling valued at work is linked to higher employee engagement, job satisfaction, and motivation. This, in turn, helps companies establish a culture where people are attracted, retained, and develop meaningful workplace relationships.
|The probability of delivering great work sees an 18x increase when the employees get recognition at work.|
Now the moot question is, HOW does one achieve that? In this article, we discover 11 ways companies can ensure employees know how much they are valued and appreciated.
11 ways to ensure your employees feel valued at work
- Understand what drives your people
Invest time and effort in understanding what drives your people – what motivates them, their evolving needs for additional responsibilities, career diversification, autonomy on assignments, etc. Bake these in the fabric of your organization’s culture via various HR projects and programs.
- Empower your people
Give your employees the freedom to work within defined parameters (with responsibility & accountability, of course). Empower them to hone their skills and own their work. Show trust and confidence in their potential by giving them responsibilities outside their defined work. This will energize and motivate them to go above and beyond to make that project a success.
- Be there in rough & tough times
Many times, organizations miss supporting their people when they are not doing their best or going through a rough patch in their personal life. By providing support at such times, an organization can reiterate its commitment to standing by its employees in all situations.
- Make room for mistakes
Allow scope for making mistakes and quickly learn from them. Provide open opportunities to help employees take risks by trying new things. Devise result-oriented programs that help employees identify their gaps, commit to their progress, own their growth and provide full support if they fail/ or make mistakes.
- Offer professional development & growth opportunities
Work parallelly on ensuring that your people feel fully supported in their upskilling endeavors, whether within a function or cross-functional. Discuss growth potential and provide opportunities to explore new projects and assignments, allowing them to discover unique strengths and possibilities.
- Hire internally
While all hiring must ensure a person is suitable for a role, giving current employees a chance shows you value them. That you are invested in fast-tracking their growth and want to see them successfully achieve their personal career goals. Hiring internally also benefits the company through reduced costs, faster & easier onboarding, and improved employee retention and loyalty rates.
- Make time for the team
Employees feel the most valued when a leader or manager spends time directly with them outside their everyday job responsibilities. These interactions are valuable points of connection for your employees and you, as they make them feel seen and heard and strengthen the sense of belonging and team play.
- Give balanced feedback
Employees are always keen to get balanced feedback – where they know both what they are doing well and where they can improve. The absence of improvement-oriented suggestions sometimes makes one question the authenticity of the positive feedback. The trick here is to avoid giving both kinds of feedback in one go and ensure that you always give constructive feedback privately.
- Make reward and recognition programs meaningful
Pay attention to the people instead of the recognition process. Ensure the employee recognition programs are not just another box for the managers to check. Instead, these should give your employees a meaningful appreciation for their achievements. Call out and celebrate achievements on public and social platforms.
- Have an open & transparent culture
Give your employees a sense of belonging and fair play. Cultivate a culture where people are encouraged to share their opinion and suggestions without worrying about the consequences (in an amiable manner). An open-door policy, where the company’s top executives are also accessible to the team, goes a long way in building equity with the team.
- Ask, acknowledge and act on feedback
Positive engagement with employees involves a robust platform for them to give feedback and share concerns, supported by a proactive mechanism to acknowledge and act on that feedback. It strongly reaffirms that the company is open to ideas, feedback and suggestions and is always available to address concerns.
Feeling valued and appreciated is the ultimate connector. It builds connection, unity, and loyalty and connects people to the company’s purpose, achievements, and success. It can single-handedly transform an organization’s culture. Employees who feel valued at work are usually happier, more productive, innovative, and less likely to be constantly looking for other job opportunities. That is why we must weave recognition and appreciation into the fabric of the company’s culture because feeling valued, just like compensation and additional benefits, is a fundamental part of an employee’s experience at work.
Amantya – A People-First Organization
At Amantya, we look beyond what is obvious. We focus on what drives our people and their needs. At times, we also help them understand and discover their needs, as sometimes, one requires support and mentoring. That is what makes our people feel valued. We stand by our team in good and bad times, encouraging them to rise above their challenges, quickly learn from their mistakes and come out more focused and driven to achieve their career goals. For us rewarding our people doesn’t mean mere certificates. These are meaningful rituals that reaffirm our confidence and pride in them. Our employees’ professional growth is sacred to us, and we go above and beyond to support and provide them with all opportunities to upskill and fast-track their careers. The higher education opportunities and certifications that Amantya provides are not outside the box, but they are not for the namesake either. We support a transparent work culture where it’s never a one-sided conversation, and our leaders are always available to provide quick closures on all suggestions, feedback, and concerns.
Our employees actively work on niche and relatively new technologies in the market, allowing them to be at the forefront of digital innovation. We are a growing organization, yet our team structure is such that we ensure everyone gets their fair share of learning. We encourage our team to push boundaries, passionately explore newer technologies, and take up more unique challenges. Billability doesn’t drive us. Our people’s growth does. Amantya is here to bring a change, and our people are our biggest force.