8 Unique Ways You Can Build A Culture of Appreciation In 2023
Appreciation is no longer just an HR checkbox activity that can be given out sparingly. Building a culture of appreciation has now become integral to any company's bottom line.
When employees are appreciated for their contributions, no matter how big or small, they feel valued & motivated. It drives them to do better and go above and beyond for the company.
But where does your organization stand in terms of appreciating the employees? Or are you still finding ways to create such a culture?
If you are still not investing in an appreciation culture, then it might be high time to do that. In this article, we will discuss the different ways through which you can foster such a culture.
What is a Culture of Appreciation?
A culture of appreciation is one where employees feel valued and celebrated for all their efforts and hard work. Managers and HR leaders in such a culture actively ensure that employees are shown their worth by not having to second-guess their place at the company. Employees who work in appreciation-based cultures are empowered, loyal, and productive.
(Image source: Twitter)
Employees tend to be more engaged when a workplace focuses on appreciation. They are also more likely to want to stay with the current company instead of looking for greener pastures.
Why is a Culture of Appreciation so crucial in the era of Great Resignation?
Since the beginning of the pandemic, a record number of employees have quit their jobs leading to the Great Resignation. And if you are not aware of it, then you are at risk of losing your employees.
Believe me; this is not a drill. A survey done by PWC has found that one in five workers globally is planning to quit their job. One of the main reasons was that the employees were not finding their job fulfilling.
Employees want more, even if you have worked on increasing their pay or provided the necessary means to do their job.
But what does it mean?
In the present era, employees want more than just work from their employers. They want a work culture that appreciates them for who they are and what they do. They want a sense of purpose and meaning in their work that allows them to give back to their community. In fact, 75% of employees in 2021 reported wanting to work for an organization that positively impacts society.
Leaders must consider the needs of modern employees when introducing new changes and reinventing the culture. The goal is to create a safe work environment where employees are less stressed, enjoy their work, and feel happy.
Benefits of Having a Culture of Appreciation in the Workplace
By now, you know that an appreciation-based culture is the X factor that keeps your employees happy. But what benefits does it bring to your company? Here are some of them:
- A high-performing workforce.
(According to a survey, 37% of respondents believe personal recognition would encourage them to produce better work more frequently.)
- Loyal employees.
(5x employees are less likely to leave their organization when employee recognition hits the mark.)
- Reduced levels of stress and absenteeism.
(With an appreciation culture, 5x employees feel connected with their work.)
- Boost employee morale and job satisfaction.
(Organizations with ongoing recognition programs have 28.6% lower levels of dissatisfaction than those without.)
- Good team bonding and dynamics.
(Peer recognition has a 35% greater positive impact than manager-only recognition.)
The list will only grow if you think outside the box to increase your efforts in appreciating and making your employees feel at home. Remember that it must be done consistently and without bias to maintain balance.
8 Ways to Create A Culture of Appreciation At Work
Now that we have discussed some of the benefits of having a culture of appreciation, how will you develop it? Below is a list of ways to help you build a culture your employees will love.
1. Celebrate Milestones
Milestones can include anything from completing a difficult task to achieving significant years of service for an organization. But whatever it may be, celebrating those milestones is important in an employee's professional life. It gives them a sense of purpose and makes them see a future with the organization.
To make things more personal and engaging, you can opt for Vantage Circle's Service Yearbook and celebrate milestones meaningfully. Moreover, you can automate the process and ensure you do not miss any significant achievements. This is especially important when you are part of a global company with a large workforce.
2. Thoughtful and Meaningful Rewards
A culture of appreciation is more than acknowledging your employees. Sometimes you have to provide the employees with rewards that have a significant impact. You need to focus on value-based rewards that can be given frequently and promptly. Moreover, you need to be thoughtful about the rewards you will give to your employees.
The focus should be on a rewards system that helps you appreciate your employees effortlessly. In fact, a well-designed recognition program can help drive an 11.1% increase in average employee performance.
Your rewards program should allow you to customize according to your needs and make them more personal. And to do so, Vantage Rewards- our rewards and recognition platform- enables you with the flexibility to provide meaningful rewards such as spot awards, social recognition, and much more. It assures that your rewarding efforts stay consistent while enhancing the overall award process.
As a result, your employees will be satisfied with the organization while minimizing any chances of attrition.
Use personalized phrases while rewarding to make it more impactful.
3. Enabling Peer-to-Peer Recognition
Appreciation culture should not be limited to top-down recognition. The employees should also be an integral part of the rewarding process and have the power to appreciate others. And to enable that, you need to invest in a system that provides a well-built peer-to-peer recognition functionality.
According to a survey, 41% of employees want more recognition from their immediate co-workers.
A culture of peer recognition allows you to foster a positive work environment and develop positive relationships. This significantly reduces conflict in the organization while empowering the employees to appreciate their peers.
And to facilitate such a system, Vantage Circle’s automated recognition tool is the perfect fit for any organization. Features such as AI automation or the availability of cool badges will allow the employees to customize them as they like. This will let them personalize their appreciation and help them value their peers for being fantastic colleagues.
4. Acknowledging Every Little Success and Big Wins
Acknowledging big wins is necessary if you want to build an appreciation culture. But celebrating small victories is as important as commemorating those big wins. It’s the little things that matter the most which can create a significant impact on the professional life of an employee.
As a manager, try to be a part of these little celebrations. Acknowledgments can be a pat on the back or recognizing a team member in front of everyone. Try to be inclusive and remember to be neutral. The aim is to reduce any chances of turnover and improve job satisfaction in the long run.
5. Solicit Feedback from Employees
Appreciation culture is not always about acknowledging or giving recognition to employees. It also includes heeding the needs of the employees and listening to their feedback. The focus is to create a work culture that empowers employees and gives them an equal voice.
To solicit employee feedback, you can conduct surveys and understand their perspective about their workplace. Be mindful of the questions and create them in an easily understandable way. And to further automate the process of your surveys, you can onboard Vantage Pulse- our survey tool that is aimed to collect the necessary feedback from employees and provide them with the best employee experience.
It is easy to use and hassle-free to create surveys. On top of that, the tool gives you an in-depth analysis of how well your surveys are running and whether the employees are participating. The main focus is improvising the positive feedback and working on the negative ones.
6. Social Recognition
Organizations can see a 55% increase in employee engagement with the help of social recognition.
In-house recognition of employees is a good way to start building your appreciation culture. But you can add more layers to that by socially acknowledging them for their exceptional contributions.
You can congratulate them on their achievements through the company's social media accounts. On top of that, you can also use your social media handles to appreciate them and make them feel valued.
Be mindful that it remains a continuous process and not a one-day occurrence.
Not everyone would want to be publicly recognized.
7. Give Timely Breaks to Reset
The current corporate culture demands employees give their best to enhance their performance. But that can take a toll on the employees and significantly increase burnout. This can have negative effects on their mental as well as physical health in the long run. As a result, instead of enhancing their overall work performance, you end up with employees that are frustrated and less productive.
The best option to tackle such occurrences is to be appreciative of their efforts and understand the stress they go through. If they show any signs of burnout, give them timely breaks and let them rejuvenate. This will show that you care about them and acknowledge the amount of work they do.
At the end of the day, it is the employees that matter the most, and a culture that appreciates them will definitely care for them.
8. Encourage Employees to Think Out of the Box
35% of chief financial officers polled identified that the biggest barrier to organizational breakthroughs is a lack of creative ideas.
Developing a workforce that is innovative and courageous in making decisions is a difficult task. It requires them to become independent and competent enough to give them the confidence to move forward. And to do that, you must prioritize their growing needs and requirements, which will help them upskill. As a manager, you can focus on-
Training and developmental programs.
Fund employee side projects.
Incentivize ideas that are impactful.
Facilitate time for round-robin meetings to increase inclusiveness.
Organize outdoor meetings and change the settings often.
This creates a work culture that embraces mistakes and gives equal opportunity to employees to pitch their ideas. Employees become more open to creativity and do not fear being judged by others.
This helps create a psychologically safe workplace where effort and ideas are valued. Definitely, there will be shortcomings, but it creates an opportunity for the employees to learn from their mistakes. In the long run, it prepares employees to tackle issues with a strategic approach and improved confidence.
Summing It Up!
Facilitating a culture of appreciation is not a hard task. All it takes is for leaders and managers to understand the conscious need of the employees and how they will impact their overall productivity. You can heed the above-mentioned ways to develop an appreciation culture or get creative and find your own ways that will suit best for your organizational culture.
Just be mindful of the process and how influential it will be in the long run for the workplace.
1. What can a company do to build a culture of recognition?
Ans: A company can-
- Be specific, relevant, and timely with their recognition process.
- Celebrate every little win and achievement.
- Be uniform and unbiased.
2. What are the key components of appreciation?
Ans: The key components include-
- Positivity, etc.
3. Why does employee recognition or appreciation matter?
Ans: Recognition or appreciation in an organization is important because it shapes the work culture and helps an organization improve the employees' overall satisfaction while reducing the chances of attrition.