Recent studies have shown that 56% of senior managers in organizations feel that they are doing a good job of recognizing their staff. An interesting number given that from these same studies, only 12% of employees feel their company is recognizing their work and only 7% indicated that their company did a good job at recognizing their efforts overall. Clearly a disconnect between what managers are doing and how employees are feeling!
These numbers tell one story; another story is that those managers who feel that they are giving recognition to their staff are feeling that their employees are not appreciating that recognition. So, at the end of the day you have managers who feel that their staff are entitled and employees who feel they aren’t being recognized. What a mess!
At Engaged HR, we tell a different tale. From our experience, the best way to address this disconnect is to make sure that everyone is speaking the same “language of appreciation”. Based on the book, The 5 Languages of Appreciation in the Workplace, by Dr. Gary Chapman and Dr. Paul White, we work with organizations to determine what each employee’s language of appreciation is and then help managers to ensure that they are recognizing and appreciating their staff in their primary language.
So, cookie cutter approaches to recognition don’t work! Having an understanding of what type of appreciation motivates an individual employee is priceless and easier than you can imagine.
It is also possible for employees to show appreciation to their managers. We also work with employee teams to make sure that when they are appreciating their managers, they are aware of their preferred language. The end result? Employees experience appreciation in a way that truly has impact and managers no longer feel that employees are entitled because they are being appreciated for their efforts in a way that really resonates.
Does this all sound like Greek to you?
Think of it this way. Imagine you are trying to have a conversation with someone from a different country. Try as you might to express yourself, you are unable to convey what you want to say because you don’t speak their language and they don’t speak yours. Frustration builds and it begins to feel like it isn’t worth it. Now add a translator into the conversation, someone who can express what is being said in the other person’s language. Suddenly the conversation makes sense, both parties are happy to understand what the other is saying and progress is made. Not such a mess anymore!
Your Engaged HR Assignment: Take a look at the recognition and appreciation efforts you have been making with your staff. When you really examine it, are you giving recognition in the way you prefer to be recognized? Are you recognizing staff in the way that they prefer or are you using a cookie cutter approach? How are you feeling about your results? If you would like to learn more about the different languages of appreciation, join us on November 27th for our in-person, half day workshop Workplace Engagement: Proven Methods for Building a Culture of Appreciation.