Best human resource initiative: Appreciate employees

People who are valued and appreciated give their best; and the best way to value people is to create an environment in which they are treated well

Appreciate your employees, biggest human resource initiativeIt's the most effective way of boosting morale and keeping your employees happy. Respect your fellow human beings, treat them fairly,disagree with them honestly, enjoy their friendship, explore your thoughts about one another candidly, work together for a common goal and help one another achieve it.
—Bill Bradley

If you were to ask me to name one resource that we  all undervalue, underrate and underutilise, I would say it is undoubtedly our Human Resource. HR has now come to be a specialist term in management; HR in former times was people power; it wasn’t just as ‘staff’ or ‘resources’ but as Mr Joshi, Ms Khanna, Ms Jones and Ms Krishnan, that people were referred to. But then, as now, one thing stands true: if you don’t value your people, you will lose them!

Recently, one of my friends who is an entrepreneur told me that a research project done in the US has found quantifiable proof that there is a direct correlation between how you treat the people who work for you and your company’s financial results. People who are valued and appreciated give their best; and the best way to value people is to create an environment in which they are treated well and made to feel valued and appreciated. Unfortunately, I know many ‘bosses’ and ‘superiors’ who do not like to convey their appreciation and value to their subordinates; they feel that these employees are doing what they are paid to do: why should they bother to appreciate them over and above the wages they are paid?

The second reason is even more devious: praise someone and chances are that s/he might expect a promotion or increment; might even get a ‘big head’. So why inflate their ego? Get the work done and let them get on with the rest of the work.

Alas, people are stingy with praise. A manpower consultancy firm found that 58 per cent of the employees they interviewed in a metro city said that they did
not even receive a simple thank-you note from their bosses for a job that was done well.

It was William James who said that the deepest need of a human being is the craving to be appreciated.

Praise helps people to reinstate their own self esteem. This, in turn, makes them enthusiastic about what they are doing; they find it worthwhile to achieve targets. Cash incentives, bonuses, perks and material benefits alone are not enough to retain people in an organisation and keep them motivated. We need to realise that people’s sense of self worth and dignity are high value assets that need to be protected. For those of us who are always worried about additional expenses, it is good to know that appreciation will make no dents in the pocket, and one can freely use it anytime, anywhere. A research carried out among young MBA students at a premier institution in India, found that the freshers valued appreciation more than a fat paycheck.

A successful business values its people as its assets, rather than as ‘staff’ or ‘workforce.’ A respected, well-treated employee is a satisfied employee who will work even harder to enhance his self-respect and prove his worth to an appreciative employer. It is not just a cliché to say, “People are our number one asset.” People are, in fact, the life-blood of an organisation.

Here is a list of simple techniques to boost morale amongst your employees:

  • Learn to express your thanks in words, through official letters and notes
  • Encourage people to come out with their suggestions and opinions. You may not agree with them; but it is good for you to know what they think
  • Share a light moment with them; crack jokes, smile and laugh with them
  • Remember to send them a note or a card on their birthdays


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J P Vaswani
J P Vaswani - or Dada as he is affectionately called - is the spiritual head of The Sadhu Vaswani Mission, Pune. He is the moving force behind the multitude of humanitarian work that the mission does. Dada has received the prestigious U-Thant Peace Award for his dedicated service to the world peace.


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