Employee Appreciation: Keep the Burnout at BayPosted on April 22st, 2020 by Cameron Schulz
About a month ago, as states began introducing social distancing and stay-at-home orders, people across the globe rushed to convert their homes into offices, daycare centers, and classrooms in a matter of days. A few may have been (somewhat) prepared—having worked remotely in the past—but nothing could prepare anyone for the magnitude and longevity of the situation that was unfolding.
Fast forward (or crawl if you’re feeling like me) to today, and many in the workforce are losing steam. Mentally, physically, emotionally, and professionally people everywhere are experiencing symptoms of fatigue, and they’re desperate for ways to keep a full-blown burnout at bay.
Your employees are struggling (as I’m sure you are too), and the only way for you and your company to emerge from this pandemic, not only alive, but alive and well, is to provide a positive and supportive remote work culture. Engaging with your employees may require a little more effort than your usual methods, but the benefits are well worth the cost with a potential to increase productivity by 17% and profitability by 21%. Those are numbers that every company can benefit from during these difficult economic times.
3 Easy Steps for Developing Well-Rounded Employee Appreciation
Research indicates that one of the top reasons for lacking motivation at work is feeling unseen or undervalued, feelings much more likely to occur with everyone burying their heads in crisis management. According to Smarp, 69% of employees say they would work harder if they felt better appreciated. Communicating is the easiest thing you can do to demonstrate employee appreciation, and we are fortunate to live in a time when communicating from a distance is much easier than in the days of pigeon carriers and stagecoaches. Use one of the copious video chat tools at your disposal to chat with your employees “face-to-face” on a regular basis—determine their progress, acknowledge their hard work, and listen to their struggles. Giving them the opportunity to feel heard in a time when human interaction is slim-to-none is the simplest way to fight feelings of isolation and establish a supportive remote environment.
As mentioned before, people are struggling professionally and personally. In the same study it was found that lack of motivation leads to 62% worsening of mood, 48% worsening of mental health, and 30% worsening of diet quality. The correlation cannot be ignored. It is essential for your employees to preserve their well-being as a whole—if they can’t care for themselves, they can’t nurture your clients and drive sales. Encouraging your employees to take regular breaks while working, along with frequent physical exercise and human interaction outside of work, conveys employee appreciation as a sincere investment in their health and promotes a positive lifestyle personally and professionally.
Recognize and Reward
According to Gartner Group VP Brian Kropp, “During periods of disruption, employees’ desire for being recognized for their contribution increases by about 30%.” Employee appreciation from a superior is a feel-good moment that encourages a positive outlook and future high-quality outcomes, but during an extended period of unrest your employees need a little more than an emailed “thank you” to feel the gravity and veracity of your appreciation. Rewarding extraordinary efforts shows that you believe in your employees’ value—fighting off feelings of insignificance. Furthermore, providing reward options that aid your employees in the various areas that they may be struggling during this time is a well-rounded approach to engagement. You may scoff at the suggestion of spending money in a time like this, but if you don’t invest in your employees, it will be difficult for them to ask others to invest in you.
It’s widely known and accepted that businesses everywhere are doing their best to retain their clients and minimize their losses. Something businesses may not be considering is employee retention following the reopening of the economy. Your employees are your most powerful asset; therefore, employee appreciation is an investment in your brand. Invest in them when they need it most, because truthfully, that's when you need them most.