Many studies show that appreciation of employees has a positive effect on commitment and motivation. The effect of appreciation on the physical and mental health of employees is also increasingly recognized. Assuming the right attitudes and behaviors, appreciation is part of good leadership. In addition, the effects of appreciation can often be felt directly by appreciators and recipients.
What do employees miss in most cases with their bosses?
The head of human resources development at a large company is concerned about the answers to the latest results of her employee survey - there is a lack of appreciation and recognition. As a manager, she asks herself “What should I do?” If managers are asked directly how they do it with praise and recognition, some say "We are not here to sleep". However, the majority replied that they give appreciation, respect the employees and also often praise them. Nevertheless, they often have the bad feeling that their actions are fizzling out.
Current neurobiological research results show that executives make a significant contribution to the health, motivation and performance of their employees through correct appreciation. Conversely, employees with an empty appreciation tank can get sick.
One of the heads of the Institute for Medical Sociology proves that working conditions with the aim of pure benefit maximization make people ill - namely the employees. This does not only affect those employees who have problems with their self-management or who do not eat healthy.
Appreciative leadership that reaches employees
Appreciative leadership must actually reach the employee so that medical costs associated with a lack of recognition and appreciation do not increase or that their own specialists do not look for alternatives on the job market.
Management boards of large companies constantly emphasize "Trust leads" or "We focus on people". There is only one reason why everyone can talk about the fact that appreciation is important, executives do their best and the results of employee surveys show a clear lack of appreciation - good intentions seep away on the way to effect. It is clear that managers have to show appreciation. Most bosses are still unclear on how it can be effective and sustainable. The best thing to encourage and appreciate your employees is to reward them with a bonus or an award with name badges.
Leading is an art that can be learned and that ideally also has the right access to the heart of the employee. Following, suitable attitudes and behaviors are compiled which make it possible to fill up the appreciation tank of the employees. In addition, five languages of appreciation are presented, which allow each employee to be valued in their preferred languages.
Attitudes and behaviors of appreciative leadership
For their own motivation and performance, most people need the feeling of being useful for the company and their own team. It is not a matter of the head. The decisive factor is the feeling of belonging, being accepted and used. Even if there is often little time for this in everyday life or attention is lacking, a small experiment should clarify what effect the presence or absence of these emotions can have.
The empty tank
Make yourself comfortable for a few minutes and turn your attention inwards. Now imagine a situation in which you have not felt belonging in your previous work life. How were you doing during this time? How did you experience the others? Employees who engage in this experiment often report that "I feel rejected, misunderstood, insecure, marginalized, and superfluous, as a victim. I am afraid of failure, I am aggressive and disappointed."
The full tank
In contrast, many employees report "I am creative, have ideas, see the positive, feel-good, am open, happy, funny, super motivated" if they remember a situation in which they felt they belonged to a team. You will then experience yourself as powerful, optimistic, confident and resilient. If employees are asked "What can your boss do if you do not feel that you belong?", the list ranges from A to approach me and show interest in me and my work until Z have time and work with me.
This also includes smiling, making an inviting gesture, keeping a friendly eye contact for a little longer, listening to suggestions and involving the employee in making decisions and shaking hands. Recognize the performance but also the progress made, listen, delegate (appealing) tasks and show trust, call the employee by name, give feedback or ask questions. It's often about simple things that become powerful habits. It starts with not typing on the computer while you are talking to your employee.
However, in practice, it is not only employees who lack appreciation. The following strategies for better appreciation also take into account the needs of managers for appreciation.
10 tried and tested attitudes of appreciation
Participate in the life of the employee through their real interest.
Always pay attention to your own emotional state and take care of it inner balance and health.
Listen carefully to understand your employee.
Be patient with your own progress and the growth rate of your employee.
Avoid making critical statements about your employee's absence.
State the direction clearly and remain friendly.
Consciously look at the good and the strengths of the employee.
Laugh at yourself and have the courage to be imperfect.
In conflicts, always ask yourself the question: What can I do now?
Perform your leadership role with enthusiasm and full commitment.
In spite of everything - sometimes, these good intentions do not have the desired effect in practice. This may be due to the fact that the appreciation has not been made in the appreciation language of the employee.
The five languages of appreciation
Let us assume that you make every effort to show appreciation to your employee in your own mother tongue. Unsuccessful, because their employee has a different mother tongue and does not understand them. You must know and speak his language to get in touch.
Language 1: praise and recognition
"Mr John, you are selling our holistic consulting concept to customers in a really convincing manner. I can really rely on you." "Ms Kate, thank you for completing the loan application yesterday." Mr Mark once said, "I can live on a nice compliment for two months."
Language 2: Spend time together
"Ms Albert, let's have lunch together in the canteen this afternoon. I'm interested in how it was at the concert yesterday." In doing so, they make their time and undivided attention a gift.
Language 3: Gifts that come from the heart
Not only is her wife happy about a bouquet of flowers. The encouraging card on her employee's desk with a personal word is an encouragement for him. Get creative.
Language 4: Be helpful
"Ms Johansson, let's clear away the moving boxes together." Do service to the other in a positive spirit. Get involved.
Language 5: touch
All forms of society know some form of physical touch as a means of welcoming the other. With the necessary sensitivity, you can fill the tank with a pat on the shoulder and of course with a handshake.
Expressed and shown appreciation can have a great impact on employees with comparatively little effort. These can be seen in the motivation and health of employees - both important pillars of operational performance.
The inner attitude of the appreciator is of great importance since the recipient can often sense the intentions involved. The appreciation that comes only from the mind loses its effectiveness on the way since this mostly only reaches the mind of the employees. Effective personnel management is’, therefore aimed at the heart and mind alike.