5 ways to value employees and boost retention

As competition for top talent continues to heat up around the globe, it is imperative that managers focus on employee recruitment and maintaining a work environment designed to retain employees, said David Biggs, ACMA, CGMA, the CFO at Legatics in London. He said one way to improve retention is to show employees that management appreciates them and their contributions. “When employees are happy and believe they are valued, they are more productive and inspired to do their best work,” Biggs said.

In addition, managers who demonstrate gratitude and recognise the important roles their employees play in their company are rewarded with a strong workplace culture and an organisation where people want to belong. After all, we spend most of our waking hours on the job, Biggs said.

Matt Miller, FCMA, CGMA, the CFO at the UK’s National Nuclear Laboratory, agreed. “We come to work not only to earn money to pay the bills, but we also seek personal gratification and a sense of accomplishment,” he said.

Expressing appreciation doesn’t have to be extravagant or complicated. There are many simple ways to show employees how much you value them. Biggs and Miller shared a few ideas that have proved to be successful.

Schedule quality time. Scheduling regular one-on-one meetings with employees outside their normal work responsibilities helps them feel valued and rewarded, Biggs said. He recommended getting to know your staff, learning about their hobbies, interests, and personal accomplishments as well as names of family members and pets.

Engage the team. When employees understand their organisation’s goals and objectives, they are more engaged and enjoy feeling a part of the team, especially when their managers add a layer of creativity to routine educational sessions.

Celebrate successes. Offering a high five or thanks for a job well done can go a long way towards helping employees feel valued and appreciated, Biggs said. For remote office environments, he pointed to instant messaging apps on social media and platforms such as Slack or Microsoft Teams.

Biggs added that public recognition must be timely and sincere, and it should be done regularly. “In some cases, I find that people don’t celebrate successes often enough,” he said.

Consider personality types. Popular public recognition programmes, team activities, and group discussions are often a great way to make employees feel important, and extroverts thrive in those scenarios. Effective managers will find ways to make the more introverted employees feel valued, too.

“Extroverts are more willing to jump up, grab a microphone, and get on a problem straightaway,” Miller said. “But the introverts can be just as powerful if they have time and space for reflection, because quite often, they will have the nugget of information that leads to a solution.”

Practise empowerment. Empowering employees to make meaningful contributions to the success of your organisation will contribute to their long-term engagement, Miller said.

Sometimes managers view employees through the filter of their own experiences, which can set off a chain reaction, starting with micromanagement and leading to employee low self-esteem, and finally, resulting in negative outcomes.

“Rather than micromanaging your team, it’s better to focus on results and empower your employees to deliver on them,” Miller said.


Adapted from: “5 ways to value employees and boost retention”, by Teri Saylor, a freelance writer based in the US, published on FM magazine on 06 July 2022.

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