Here’s How to Make Your Employees Feel Valued at Work

We've all had that job where we’re either making coffee for strangers or are folding the clothes they don't want. 

You know, the jobs that make you feel as if you're just a cog in the machine. 

You're doing what you have to do to get the bills paid, but there’s no drive or passion behind it. 

Instead, we look for the nearest exit. 

This lack of passion and engagement in people’s work leads to a high employee turnover rate.

Only 15% of the world’s employees are engaged in their work worldwide, and such limited employee engagement leads to high turnover rates.

No manager wants their team to feel uninterested and detached from their work, but many struggle to understand what they can do to turn the story around. 

Yet, it turns out that the answer is quite simple. The best way for managers to ignite passion in their team members is by showing their team how their work impacts the organization. 

When team members understand their work’s impact, they become more involved with their projects because they want to do their best for their team and organization. 

To show your team members the importance of their contribution, you need to create a team recognition system.

Throughout this article, I discuss three strategies you can use to improve your employee recognition system and help your team understand the lasting impact on your organization. 

✅ Start by providing increased employee recognition. 

✅ Next, help employees understand the more profound sense of purpose in their work by: 

                👉 Helping them foster an emotional attachment to their work 

                 👉 Showing them how their work contributes to the goals of the organization

How to Increase Employee Recognition in Four Ways

Your team is our most valuable resource, and you must treat them as such. 

The best way to help your team understand their importance is to create an effective recognition system that rewards your team for their contributions. 

When you reward your team members, they feel respected and valued for their work, making them feel more committed to the organization and the team. 

In other words, by increasing employee recognition, you also boost employee satisfaction, and engagement and satisfied employees are 12-22% more productive than unhappy employees. 

Here are four ways to recognize and reward your employees, and in return, boost your overall business margins!

1. Use technology to publicize accomplishments. 

Recognizing and publishing employee accomplishments doesn’t have to be complicated. It can be as simple as adding a ‘team wins’ group forum to your team’s messaging app. 

For example, if your team uses Slack Hey Taco is a top-rated HR slack integration that helps improve culture through team shoutouts. 

Hey Taco was built to create happier teams and increase positive communication. 

The app allows team members to send ‘tacos’ to each other in a designated Slack channel (group forum) to show their applause for a job well done.  Reward your employees with bonuses. 

2. Reward your employees with bonuses. 

One of the most effective ways to recognize your team members for their work is through direct rewards such as different kinds of bonuses.

Bonuses can come in the form of gifts, stipends, or extra bonuses. 

A great way to include employee gifts into your recognition system is on holidays (i.e. a Christmas gift) or after a big project is completed. 

Stipends are predetermined amounts of money separate from an individual’s salary or standard pay. These stipend funds are flexible and give employees the to prioritize their spending in ways they feel they need it most. 

The top benefit of offering bonuses to our team through stipend management software is that it reduces pre-approving individual budgets’ administrative burden. 

If you are interested in using stipends to reward and recognize your employees check out the services, Hoppier offers. 

Another way to offer bonuses to your team is through direct cash bonuses. 

Cash bonuses can come in the form of an extra holiday bonus or given to employees who show exceptional performance. 

Regardless of what form you choose, bonuses are a great way to reward team members for a job well done because of their direct and tangible assets employees can see. 

3. Provide opportunities for employee development. 

As much as you want to develop and improve your team members’ work, they want to do the same. 

Encouraging employee development will increase employee skill and productivity, but it will also benefit the business as employees learn to produce higher quality work more efficiently. 

Google is an excellent example of employee development processes that you can implement in your workplace. 

At Google, employee training happens at a peer level in a program called g2g

G2g is a volunteer peer teaching network. Six thousand Google employees commit their time to help their peers develop and grow their professional skills. 

The g2g teaching is done in various ways, from workshop to 1:1 mentoring and classes from leadership, to Python coding. 

Offering peer training is a great way to provide team training at a low cost and help develop team members into leaders.

4. Make it personal. 

While this may seem obvious, it’s often forgotten.  

One of the easiest and most effective ways to show an employee you understand and recognize their accomplishments is specific, personal, and accurate. 

For example, if you find that employees have been working on a professional skill that has helped them improve their last deliverable, tell them! 

Use positive words and demonstrate to your employee how you have noticed their improvement and are proud and happy with their performance. 

Another way you can be personal in your employee recognition is to acknowledge accomplishments outside of work. 

Team members are more than workers. They’re people too, and recognizing their outside hobbies and passions they’re involved in reminds them of that. 

By following these four steps, you will show team members that you value their work, which will help them understand their importance to the team and organization.

Help Team Members Find a Sense of Purpose in Their Work

The next step to help your team members see the impact their work makes is to help them understand that there is a profound sense of purpose in their work for the team and the organization. 

The best way to help team members feel a more profound sense of purpose in their work is to help them foster an emotional connection to the work that they do for the organization. 

To understand how you can help team members create an emotional attachment to their keep reading. 👇  

A. Help team members find purpose through the creation of an emotional connection to their organization. 

Due to the workforce's subjective nature today, many employees don't understand how their work makes a difference to their organization. 

However, individual contribution is vital in helping team members understand how their work makes a difference. They show up with enthusiasm and dedication towards achieving the organization’s goals.

The best way to show employees that their work is impactful is to change their perspective. 

The best example of implementing this perspective shift is in a great case study by the accounting firm, KPMG

KPMG created an emotional connection between employees and their firm by transforming their value statement into a story. 

In the video below, you’ll see KPMG employees share how their contribution to the company truly helps shape history. 

You see, KPMG understood that just telling people about the higher purpose of their job from the top down wouldn't be enough. From juniors to CEO, everyone had to share their story about how their work made a difference. 

In the end, KPMG made purposeful storytelling a part of their leadership development program. 

By incorporating purposeful storytelling into their leadership development program, managers developed compelling narratives that motivated employees. 

Source: KPMG

As a storyteller by nature, I can help teach your managers to deliver compelling statements to rally your employees through my one-on-one leadership coaching program.

The next thing you can do to help your team members feel a greater sense of purpose is to show them how their work contributes to their success visually. 

B. Use visuals to show team members that their work contributes to the goals of the organization.

The saying, “you won’t believe it until you see it,” couldn’t be more accurate. 

Visuals are powerful tools of persuasion, and employee recognition at a visual level is a great way to convince employees of their meaning to the organization. 

For KPMG, they identified and published employee recognition through the creation of digital posters. 

In the poster campaign 10,000 Stories Challenge, 27,000 employees and partners were asked to develop posters in teams or as individuals for a marketing campaign. 

The marketing team received 42,000 entries for the poster campaign; it was clear that employees felt the need to be recognized. 

You see, employees who feel appreciated and valued not only work harder and produce better quality work, but they’re also more engaged and committed to their organization and their team. 

Source: Smarp

In Summary

Overall, to increase employee engagement and decrease turnover rates, you need to help your team understand the lasting impacts on the organization. 

Without a high-performing team, your business will fail, so you must recognize and value your team's effort into upholding the organization's goals. 

To show your team that you value them the first, and easiest thing you can do is provide increased employee recognition. 

There are four easy ways you can increase employee recognition: 

  1. Publicize accomplishments.
  2. Reward team members with bonuses. 
  3. Provide opportunities for professional development. 
  4. Appreciate team members beyond an employee status and recognize their achievements too.  

The next thing you can do to help your employees feel as if they're impacting their work is to help them foster a profound sense of purpose in their work. 

To help your team see the greater purpose of their work, you must first help them create an emotional connection to the work they're doing through changing your organization's value system into a narrative each team member can live and work by. 

Finally, the last step to showing your team their value to the organization is to visually show them how their work contributes to accomplishing the organization's goals.

Remember, team members will not be able to understand the importance of their work if they have not moved through the first four foundational steps:

     1. High-Performing Teams Need Psychological Safety

     2. Three Ways to Empower Employees to Do Their Best Work

     3. Why You Should Embrace Conflict in the Workplace

     4. Develop Leaders: Three Effortless Steps for Transforming Employees Into Leaders.

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