Employee Appreciation Day is March 1st – What do Employees Want? - American Society of Employers - Heather Nezich

Employee Appreciation Day is March 1st – What do Employees Want?

Employee Appreciation Day is this Friday, March 1st. Do you know what makes your employees feel appreciated? It might differ by generation according to a new report by Talent LMS.

Generational Divide

Younger employees report feeling less valued than their older colleagues. 70% of employees over 54 years old report feeling appreciated at work. This contrasts starkly with younger employees. Only 49% of people 24 years and younger feel recognized. And the figure drops further: 30% of Gen Z workers don’t feel appreciated at work.

Most Employees Feel Recognized, but not Sufficiently

Overall, the Talent LMS research shows that 62% of employees report feeling appreciated. But with that being said, 28% of workers report rarely or never receiving praise for their work from managers. And 33% are recognized only sometimes. That’s still a huge group of employees who are not feeling appreciated.

What Form of Appreciation do Employees Value the Most?

Out of all employees surveyed, 59% favor cash bonuses over PTO. This particular reward type is then followed by paid time off (PTO), then gifts, or gift cards.  But, given the choice, Gen Z employees picked PTO over cash. The youngest working generation, up to 24 years old, ranked PTO as the most valuable form of appreciation.  The younger generation prefers workplace flexibility and work-life balance – they don’t view PTO as a mere perk, but as the most desired form of appreciation.

Appreciation Through Learning & Development

Workplace learning and recognition play pivotal roles in fostering a culture of growth and acknowledgment, significantly influencing employee satisfaction, as underscored by our survey findings.

A substantial portion of employees recognize the correlation between learning and development (L&D) initiatives and appreciation within their organizations. Specifically, 54% noted their company's demonstration of appreciation through investments in training and developmental opportunities. Additionally, 50% acknowledged their companies' efforts in acknowledging skill advancements among employees.

However, there's a twist – 30% of respondents expressed dissatisfaction with how their companies demonstrate appreciation following skill enhancement.

These insights underscore the importance of two key actions:

  1. Companies must prioritize investing in their employees' professional growth through robust development programs.
  2. They must ensure that recognition mechanisms are in place to acknowledge and appreciate the skills and expertise acquired by their workforce.

Building a Culture of Appreciation

55% of the workforce believes their leaders genuinely appreciate employees. An even greater majority, 56%, affirm that their company commemorates work anniversaries and milestones while fostering a culture that cherishes and honors employees' significant moments.

Overall, this suggests a positive atmosphere of recognition, further supported by a personalized approach to acknowledging employees, as evidenced by another discovery: 52% of employees report that employee appreciation is tailored to individuals within their company.

Consider these five ways to show your employees they are appreciated:

  1. Recognition Programs: Implementing employee recognition programs where outstanding performance and achievements are acknowledged publicly within the organization can be highly motivating and rewarding for employees.
  2. Flexible Work Arrangements: Offering flexible work arrangements such as remote work options, flexible hours, or compressed workweeks demonstrates trust in employees' abilities to manage their work effectively and promotes work-life balance.
  3. Professional Development Opportunities: Providing opportunities for employees to enhance their skills, knowledge, and career growth through training programs, workshops, conferences, or tuition reimbursement shows investment in their professional development and future success.
  4. Employee Benefits and Perks: Offering competitive benefits packages, wellness programs, additional vacation days, or other perks like company outings or social events can enhance employee satisfaction and demonstrate appreciation for their contributions.
  5. Open Communication and Feedback: Creating a culture of open communication where employees feel valued and heard, and regularly seeking feedback on their experiences, ideas, and concerns fosters a sense of belonging and appreciation within the organization.

Enhancing employee appreciation involves employing a variety of approaches to cater to different employee preferences. By diversifying methods, organizations can effectively acknowledge and value the contributions of all team members.


Source: Talent LMS

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