10 Ways to Make Your Employees Feel Valued 

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Employees are the bread and butter of your small business. They keep things moving and they keep things under control. Without them, you’re, well, you’re toast—minus the butter.

 

You appreciate them every day, but do they know it?

 

 

If you think a twice-monthly paycheck and the occasional happy hour and/or annual holiday party gives them the warm and fuzzies, think again. It’s time to step up your game and show your employees just how much you value them. But how?

 

 

We’ve gathered 10 easy ways you can make your employees feel appreciated. It’s not as hard as you think. And can be done on a shoestring budget. The result? A happier workplace with more productive employees that are more likely to stick with you.

 

Treat them like human beings before employees.
We’d be remiss if we didn’t point this one out before we really get into things. Your staff has human needs just like you do. Things like doctors appointments and family responsibilities. They need sick days and time off and flex time. Make sure you provide what they need as humans—and do it graciously—and they’ll feel like you actually care about them, which you absolutely do.
Value their personal time. 
Part of being human is having a life outside work. When you don’t respect your employees’ personal time, you’re saying you don’t respect them. You may want to work on the weekends. You also may not mind checking email on vacation, maybe even jumping on a conference call. But your employees probably don’t feel the same way. If you value their personal time, they’ll feel valued, too.
Ask how they’re doing.
When you ask how your employees are doing, is it as a pleasantry or are you really asking how they’re doing? Pleasantries are nice, but it’s important to genuinely check in with your staff about their well being. It’s that human element of the workplace, and, again, making your staff feel like you care about them.
Really listen to them.
Any good journalist will tell you that the key to a good interview—one where you really learn things about someone—is listening. The same goes for talking to your staff. No matter what you’re discussing, when you’re talking to your employees, stop and really listen. Put down your phone. Look up from your computer. Make eye contact and engage. You’ll see conversation will really start flowing, and with it, good feelings and trust.
Solve problems.
If you’re regularly checking in with employees, they’ll feel more comfortable coming to you with workplace problems. When they do, hear them out, then work to solve them. As a manager, you know that sometimes this can take time. Be sure to update them on what you’re doing to resolve the issue. Just the fact that you care enough to take issues seriously, then address them, will make your staff feel supported, and, as a result, happier.
Give them new challenges.
The everyday grind can get monotonous. Assigning employees a challenging new project—especially one that caters to a specific skill or interest—communicates that you trust them to take it on and do a good job. You’d be surprised how many of your employees are looking for new challenges. And providing them fosters confidence, pride, and trust.
Give them freedom.
Speaking of trust, placing confidence in your staff—that they’re hardworking, reliable, and responsible—goes a long, long way. And one of the best ways to do that is to give them freedom. Giving them the option to work remotely is a great way to do this, with a list of advantages that benefit them and you.
And give them plenty of kudos.
Whether it’s in person or in writing, verbal praise makes employees feel good—and it’s good for your workplace. It’s so obvious and so simple and yet so many managers fail to do it regularly (or at all). Recognizing a job well done, or thanking someone for their hard work, goes a long, long way. So start doing it now, then keep doing it.
Provide perks. 
We covered this before but we’re happy to repeat it. Some simple perks will perk your employees right up. Even better? They can be done on a modest budget (or no budget at all). Whether it’s leaving early on Fridays or a comfy nap room (yes, naps!), friendly perks are a simple, consistent way to make employees feel appreciated on a daily basis.

 

Celebrate your team. 

Your team works hard. Be sure to celebrate them—their hard work, long hours, and achievements—regularly. It might mean clocking out early and heading outside for drinks and snacks. It could be ordering in a nice lunch or giving them a surprise day off. Good managers know there’s a team behind every win. And every time you show heartfelt appreciation for your staff, your entire business wins, too.

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