Your employees may be the hardest working people on the planet and all of them are motivated to make your company bigger and better, or every single one of your employees could be reading magazines while on the clock, doing only half of their work, calling in sick when they are not, and remaining disengaged in their job. Whether you have employees that are motivated or those who are slacking off, or even a mixture of both, better employees start with a workplace where people are inspired and feel appreciated and as though their job matters. If they do not feel as though you appreciate them, then they are highly unlikely to get any better and work harder for you. Many executives think that the only way they can show their appreciation to their employees is by giving them big cash bonuses or trophies. These are good incentives to show your appreciation, but they certainly aren’t the only ways to show your appreciation in the work environment. Below are a few ways to make your employees feel appreciated, electrified, and excited about working again.
1.) Convey your appreciation with words
The easiest way to show your appreciation for your employees is to tell them that you are grateful for the work they do and appreciate how hard they try. Compliment them when they do something right or handle a difficult situation well. Say please and thank you when you are asking them to do things instead of ordering them around all of the time. Finally, get to know them personally and not just as an employee. Get to know who they are married too and the names of their kids, learn about what they like to do and new things they are learning. When you get to know them on a deeper level and open up about yourself as well, they are more likely to trust you and be loyal to you. It doesn’t cost employers any money at all to praise their employees and tell them how much they appreciate them which means you can pile it on as often as possible!
2.) Listen to everyone’s ideas
Employees want to feel like they are being heard and that their ideas matter. Another free and simple way to show your appreciation to your employees is by simply listening when they come to you with an idea. Encourage them to brainstorm and bring fresh perspectives to you. From the newest, lowest level team members to the highest-ranking managers, your employees should feel free to bring you new ideas. When you make implementing these ideas a priority, your team will feel appreciated and as though their efforts are being noticed.
3.) Give them the tools they need to go up
Employees, especially lower-ranking employees, do not want to stay where they are forever. They want the opportunity to move up, learn more about the company, take on more responsibility, and make more money. When you tell an employee that you are committed to training them so they can move up, they will feel inspired to perform better and prove their abilities to you. When you invest in them, they will invest in the company.
4.) Give your employees a flexible schedule
This is, again, a completely free way to show your appreciation to your employees. Life is hard and schedules are difficult. Offering your employees a flexible schedule so they can spend more time with family, take off for an important reason without penalty, or even come to work early shows your employees that they are a valuable member of the team and that their lives outside of work matters too.
5.) Celebrate them when they have a big milestone
Whenever an employee has a birthday, celebrates an anniversary with the company, or moves up in the company, take time out of the day to intentionally celebrate and praise them. You can do this through a small gathering where everyone comes to see them: cupcakes, banners, trophies, engraved plaques of their achievements, a small bonus, or even a new office space. Celebrating your employees creates a workplace where recognition, achievement, and appreciation are bountiful which in turn keeps your employees loyal to your company and excited to work for you.