Whether you work for a local not-for-profit agency or a multi-national corporation, or a two-man band, your organisation won’t succeed without the involvement and hard work of your staff.
In turn, the more you can do to assure them that they’re appreciated by their employers, the more they’ll want to do their best to support and help your organisation grow.
Literally – say thank you. You don’t have to make a big deal about it, but making sure you tell your staff that you notice and appreciate what they do can make a huge difference to their motivation and productivity levels.
Adding specific details such as why their contribution was important can boost your employees’ morale even more as it helps them feel that they really made a difference and did the right thing.
Taking the time to have one-to-one conversations with your staff is an easy way to make them feel that they (and their ideas and concerns) really matter, as well as build a stronger working relationship.
Ensuring that staff feel comfortable raising concerns and suggesting ideas will allow any issues to be resolved before they get too big and potentially provide new concepts or strategies that will benefit the organisation.
Following on from the previous point, if you know an employee is working towards a particular goal, or trying to sort a particular problem, give them the support they need to achieve it. This could involve anything from giving advice (or pointing them to someone else who can do so), to encouraging flexible work practices that will give them the time and space they need.
Allowing your staff to work more independently and take on more responsibility not only implies that you have confidence in their ability to handle any issues, it also allows them to develop new skills which they can then apply to their day-to-day work. (Plus it has the advantage of freeing up more of your time so you can concentrate on your job, not theirs).
There are many ways to do this, and it doesn’t necessarily have to cost a lot – expensive outings or gifts can be a good option to recognise specific achievements or events, but employees should also feel valued each day.
Another option is to look at smaller, more everyday ways of showing appreciation for staff, such as flexible working practices, or casual dress on Fridays, or even a simple Employee Benefits programme that allows staff to access discounts across a range of retailers without a big cost to the organisation.