The Power of Praise in Business
01 Oct 2012
How important is praise in business? According to psychologists, management experts, and neurologists, it is extremely important. Employees who receive regular recognition and praise increase their individual productivity, increase engagement among their colleagues, are more likely to stay with their organization, and receive higher loyalty and satisfaction scores from customers. Being able to recognize and commend hardworking employees is a skill that all leaders should possess for both the good of their staff and their company as a whole.
Top employees don’t need to be applauded for every accomplishment, but employers should recognize their employees for their hard work and dedication. Employees who feel devalued and unrecognized are more likely to lose interest in their work and become resentful. Just because a top employee appears to be completely self-reliant, don’t make the assumption that he or she doesn’t need or want feedback and acknowledgement. When employers treat their employees with disrespect or indifference, employees will undoubtedly feel interchangeable, and easily replaceable. The worst mindset an employer can have is the “If you don’t hear from me, it means that you’re doing a good job.” Communication is crucial when it comes to making employees feel important.
Praise and engagement go hand-in-hand when it comes to business. Being recognized leads to the well-being of employees, which then leads to better employee engagement. Undoubtedly, engaged employees will work smarter and harder than those who are lacking in enthusiasm for their job. In short, praise involves very little effort and produces a lot in return.
When giving praise, it’s important to give it as soon as the positive behavior is noticed. The closer the recognition is to the action, the more likely it will be repeated. Employers should also give praise on a regular basis, so that employees learn what specific behaviors their employers are looking for. Employers should praise activities, not just results. By recognizing positive activities, you show understanding and involvement. It is equally important to praise who someone is (their character), not just what he or she does.
It’s also important to note that when employees work for employers who treat them with respect, they are statistically healthier. According to research, when employees work for a boss they dislike, they have significantly higher blood pressure. This boss-induced hypertension could increase the risk of coronary heart disease and stroke.