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We all know appreciating each other is important. However, it can be hard to remember to say “thank you” or “well done” at the end of a long work week when all you want to do is get home to your family. That being said, recognizing your employees for a job well done is more important than you think.


Appreciating your colleagues creates value for your business by strengthening team performance and enhancing your professional relationships.  It creates a ripple effect - those who feel appreciated feel more dedicated to their work, and may be more inclined to pass on the appreciation to their colleagues. Conversely, forgetting to appreciate your employees for their hard work can leave them feeling disengaged or resentful. A recent study of over 1,700 employees by the American Psychological Association (APA) indicated that over half of all employees intended to search for new jobs because they felt under-appreciated. 

It’s time for good old fashioned gratitude to make a comeback. To help build a culture of appreciation in your office, here are 5 easy tactics you can implement today.

5 Tips to Maximize the Impact of “Thank You.”

 

1) Be public. 

Always appreciate your team with the whole group present as it makes your statement public and recognized by others. No matter how humble or private people may be, most people care about how they're perceived by others. Showing appreciation publicly makes people feel good and creates an open culture where it's the norm to acknowledge solid team work and achievement. When people feel appreciated, they are more productive, innovative and creative.

2) Be personal and specific. 

Attribute your appreciation to an individual and call people out by name. Tell everyone what they did and how it helped you. Being specific can help your staff understand the positive impact their hard work has on the organization.  For example:

"Dan, I appreciate your creativity from our meeting yesterday with Acme as it helped me provide assurance to the client that we're the right team for the job."

3) Quality counts. 

It's all about perception. Recognition through corporate gifts and awards can have a profound effect on relationships. When one receives something of prestige it reiterates the value of the relationship. If a gift is perceived as cheap or of low quality, it can result in the recipient feeling undervalued - or at worst, humiliated.

 

4) Business is all about people and relationships. 

Appreciation doesn't always have to take the form of executive gifts and fancy luxuries. Instead, take the opportunity to take a staff member out for a quick lunch or coffee break.  Small tokens of appreciation like this - given in the right way -  make people feel valued by an organization. We all work way too long and hard to not enjoy our jobs. Be good to each other, because it feels good and it's great for business too!

 

5) Enjoy the Results! 

The process of appreciating colleagues and employees can help everyone be more productive as individuals and within teams. If done well, appreciation can make the recipients feel amazing, acknowledged and empowered. If done poorly, it can have the opposite effect - leaving recipients resentful and questioning their relationship. While we usually think it’s the thought that counts, it’s the execution that maximizes value within your business.



If you're looking for more information about how to implement employee recognition programs, give us a shout - we'd be happy to provide more tips. After all, gifting is all we do!

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Editor's note: this post was originally published on November 6, 2016 and has been revamped and updated for comprehensiveness.