Valentine’s Day is the famous (or overcommercialized, depending on how you choose to look at things!) time of the year when we demonstrate our affection and appreciation for those important people in our lives. But Valentine’s Day isn’t limited to romantic partners, friends and family – your organization can celebrate this special holiday with your employees by demonstrating a special kind of LOVE:
From managers up into the leadership team, it’s important to ensure that employees know they are appreciated for what they do and how they contribute to the company’s mission. We learned in our 2023 Engagement Trends Report that 66% of U.S. employees believe their work wellbeing would improve if they were simply thanked more for their hard work. Talk about an easy change to make! This Valentine’s Day, try sending out a special eCard or treat to remind your staff that they are critical to your success as a business.
Ownership means different things to different people, but in this case we’re talking about trust and responsibility. How do we engage employees with ownership? Offer them a range of professional learning and development opportunities to provide them with room to grow in their careers. Not only does this put power in their hands to shape their own future, it shows that their employers care about their long-term success and satisfaction.
This year, take time to learn what your employees are most interested in (and passionate about!) and ensure you provide resources to help them accomplish their goals. Not only will employees appreciate opportunities for career growth beyond their scheduled 9-to-5, they will see that you believe in and support the development of their skills and careers.
Your company values shape and guide your company culture by forming the foundation of expectations about how your people will act at work and interact with their coworkers. And we know that the day-to-day grind can be tiresome – made all the more stressful if employees are ignoring your company values and creating an unsupportive and unwelcoming environment. Over half of employees surveyed said they frequently experience stress at work, and ad hoc recognition is that spoonful of sugar helping counteract the stresses of a tumultuous economic climate and more.
Use Valentine’s Day to catalyze a culture of continuous recognition by encouraging employees and managers to recognize and appreciate each other for their contributions – both to their work and to their social spaces.
Empathy is our ability to emotionally identify with how other people are feeling and create a space of understanding. Practicing empathy yields compassion, and compassion spurs action. When we are compassionate and empathetic with employees, we not only create a psychologically safe workspace, but we also we assure them that we both care about them as people, and respect, appreciate and recognize their contributions to the organization. Those contributions aren’t limited to their day to day work or big projects – they include the social relationships they build and foster with peers and managers. And it’s important to recognize that, too.
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