There is a lot companies can do to foster the self-worth and importance of employees. Rather than allow their talents to be underused and unappreciated, it makes so much more sense for the employer to step in and do what it can to improve the situation.
When companies do everything they can to build their employees up and help them develop to the fullest, this has impacts on engagement, retention, motivation, and productivity. Here are several practical ways companies can foster the self-worth of their employees.
Officevibe showed 63% of employees don’t think they get enough praise from employers for the things they do. Companies can’t get very far without employees, and they deserve recognition when they meet goals, complete projects, or improve the management of certain departments.
For most employees, getting a paycheck is not enough recognition that their efforts are important. If your company doesn’t find ways to show employees they’re appreciated, you may soon lose some of them to other companies that better understand this need.
If a formal appreciation program is out of reach, simply finding the time to say thank you, sending out a memo of appreciation that everyone in the company sees, or taking an employee to lunch one day can help them feel valued.
Praise Their Strengths
Gallup polling demonstrated that when managers focused on developing employees’ strengths rather than focusing on their weaknesses, only 1% of those employees became actively disengaged at work. Engagement levels for those whose managers focused on their strengths was twice the level (61%) of those whose managers focused on their weaknesses. A disengaged employee is well on his or her way toward looking elsewhere to get a job, so keeping them engaged is worth your time.
While it might seem counterintuitive to focus on employees’ strengths because they’re already developed, the positive focus helps them do much better work and use their strengths in new ways. By contrast, focusing on the negative hurts employees’ sense of self worth and undermines their confidence, which wounds productivity and motivation.
Make Criticism Constructive
When an employer can’t avoid giving criticism to employees, it’s important to make that criticism as constructive as possible. It should be clear to employees that you think they’re doing well, and that their performances are valued before any suggestions or instructions for changes are given.
Most employees can understand that feedback in the form of constructive criticism needs to be given at times, and they’ll accept it without much impact on self-worth if it’s sandwiched between praise and affirmation. Constructive criticism is valuable because it helps employees do their jobs better with the understanding that they’re already doing well.
Meet with Them Regularly
The more time managers or employers spend to meet with employees, the more worthy they’ll feel as they go about their jobs. There’s something about knowing your manager values you enough to invest their time in you as an employee that empowers them to do things they might not have thought they could do.
The meetings themselves can be opportunities to encourage and build up employees, which will add to the sense of empowerment and worthiness that employees feel. If managers don’t have time to meet with employees individually at least on an occasional basis, the company may need to hire more managers to be adequately staffed.
Foster Their Growth
Besides one-on-one encouragement, companies can foster employee growth with training opportunities, by asking them to take on new tasks, and offering chances for advancement as they become available.
Employees who grow are more likely to remain engaged with their jobs and to stay where they are instead of looking for opportunities elsewhere. In today’s inflationary environment, workers with the capability to advance can’t afford not to if they want to keep up with expenses and eventually get to better places in their finances and work-life balances.
Focus on Their Wellness
The link between employee wellness and job performance is obvious. Enhancing employee wellness, usually through job-related benefits like an on-site clinic, fitness center, or health foods can be a gamechanger in the way employees feel about themselves and their jobs.
One of the biggest problems in the workplace occurs when employees begin to feel like their employers only care about whether they can do their jobs, not about them as people. While this stirs resentment in some, others pick up on the messaging and throw their wellness out of alignment trying to meet expectations without enough regard for self-care. A healthy focus on wellness can help employees value it more, which then has the unintended consequence of better performance because of better wellness.
Ask for Help in Making Decisions
Companies that ask for employees’ help in making decisions are wise for two different reasons at the same time. For one thing, getting employee input when making decisions leads to more effective decision-making and is good for the business.
It’s also another way to empower employees and show you value their contributions. Getting employees to help make decisions is a win-win for everyone. It’s one sign of a healthy company with good ownership and management.
If your company needs help to hire staff more effectively, check out GDH to see how we can improve your recruiting process. Looking for star employees? We find them.