Why are employee thank yous important? If done right, they create employee engagement.
What is engagement?
Employee engagement is the emotional investment the employee has in the organization and its goals. That’s from Employee Engagement for Everyone by New York Times bestselling author Kevin Kruse. Tom Short, co-CEO and founder of Kudos, includes the quote in HR.com’s ebook, Recognition and Engagement Excellence Essentials.
Why make employee thank yous a top priority?
Employee engagement levels are lower than ever, Short writes. In his article, “Thank Different,” he says it proves that old-school, top-down, command-and-control management doesn’t work.
“Every major research firm on the planet has confirmed … there’s a disengagement epidemic going on and once it hits your office it’s downright contagious. No matter where you sit on the disengagement scale, the bottom line is it affects your bottom line. Smart CEOs are making employee engagement their top priority.”
He provides statistics that readily affirm the wisdom of this strategy.
- Just 30% of the American workforce is engaged in their work.
- The ratio of disengaged to engaged employees is 2 to 1.
- 70% of American workers aren’t reaching their full potential.
- Nearly two-thirds (65%) of 32,000 full-time workers globally are not highly engaged.
- Employee turnover costs amount to 48% to 61% of an employee’s annual salary.
- A disengaged employee costs a company approximately $3,400 of every $10,000 of annual salary due to lost productivity.
Raising employee engagement and productivity is critical to operational excellence.
“When it comes to culture, it’s not innovative products or invested dollars that make the difference,” Short writes. “The secret is connection….Companies aren’t born with it. They create connection by publicly and repeatedly showing appreciation. Engagement all comes down to how you give recognition.”
It’s not the same as employee happiness or satisfaction, he emphasizes. People can be happy and/or satisfied without being committed, productive, or engaged in their jobs.
Employee thank yous done right.
Effective employee recognition programs:
- Recognize people based on specific results and behaviors
- Include peer-to-peer recognition
- Celebrate successes and people
- Make the thank you process easy, specific, and frequent
- Connect recognition to company values and/or goals
There are software-as-a-service (SaaS) solutions that facilitate the process, Short notes, including his company’s Kudos product.
Employee thank yous yield measurable results, as these numbers show. Short cites research firm Bersin by Deloitte:
- In organizations where recognition occurs, employee engagement, productivity, and customer service are roughly 14% higher than in organizations without recognition.
- A 15% improvement in employee engagement can result in a 2% uptick in operating margins.
The best companies in the world are focused on recognition—employee thank yous.
“Shift your focus to recognition and you’ll be among them,” Short writes.
A culture that practices recognition is building gratitude, too. For a step-by-step guide with other practical tips to get you started on building a vibrant culture of gratitude, download our FREE e-book, “Transform Your Workplace with Gratitude.” Click the image below and start sharing your workplace gratitude today!
About gThankYou, LLC
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