Where do you spend a majority (or at least a good chunk) of your time? Work. And do you feel valued or appreciated for all of the work you do? If you’re like nearly half of employees out there, there’s a good chance the answer is “no.”
Earlier this year, the American Psychological Association (APA) released results from their online survey on employee engagement, satisfaction and motivation as they relate to feeling valued by an employer. Surprisingly or not, only 54 percent said their employer made them feel valued, but of those, 93 percent said they’re motivated to do their best and 88 percent said they felt engaged. Of those who did not feel valued, only 33 percent said they’re motivated to do their best and only 38 percent felt engaged.
How Employee Appreciation is Linked to Work Performance
While these results are only representative of a single group of respondents (there are others similar studies out there), there is a clear correlation between feeling valued/appreciated and a desire to perform well and remain actively engaged with an employer.
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Unfortunately, too many companies have too little focus on this piece of the recruitment-engagement-retention puzzle but then wonder why they’re losing top talent to other organizations or not even able to get them in the door let alone discussing how work performance is impacted.
Lessons in Employee Appreciation from “The Millennials”
It may be easier to dismiss as sappy fad with no real value that’s only important to Gen Y (aka the Millennials), but with nearly half of the workforce reporting they aren’t feeling the love from their employer, it’s time to pay more attention to want employees really want. Sometimes it’s a more competitive salary, other times it’s flextime, but I would go out on a limb to say there’s always a desire to be appreciated.
A Fresh Perspective on Feeling Valued & Workplace Motivation
You may disagree with my last statement, but as someone who recently went from being simply content in a role/with a company for multiple years to being amazed with a new organization in the first week alone, being valued and appreciated means more than you’d think – you just might not realize it until you experience it differently.
A fresh perspective on what a career can and should be has brought the idea of employee appreciation being a key factor in employee engagement and motivation to the forefront. It’s something that must be visible and authentic from the first interaction (think candidate experience), during the interview process, on the first day and ongoing throughout an employee’s tenure. If you fail to recognize and act upon this desire, your ability to recruit and retain the best people will prove more and more difficult as a new generation takes over the workforce.