The Power of Praise in Business- How to Do it Right
Every employer loves its employees if they are hard-working and meet the deadline on time. But do your employees love you too? They might if they know that you appreciate their work. Of course, they get salaries for their hard work but what do they get for always staying motivated to work, and always ready to get new assignments in their hands? Salaries are just for their work. A salary can never pay for employees’ energy and a strong will.
How can bosses tell their employees how much they appreciate them? By praising them for their efforts and hard work. Praise might not give them as much happiness as a bonus and increased salary does but they surely will be happy to know that someone cares.
Here are some tips on how an employer can praise their employees
- Match the praise with work efforts: Many employers have seen the day when there was a problem and no one could solve it. It could be a customer who would just not be satisfied with any answer, it could be an internal problem, it could be anything. Then an employee comes up with such a great idea and the problem is solved in a minute. After this, a quick “hey, good work” will not hurt anyone. But it will make a great impact on that employee and also other employees will be encouraged to work hard. An employee who is much more capable and hard-working might expect more than just praise. Depending upon your employees’ work capabilities promote them at their deserving post.
- Notice employees: While the hiring management team looks for a “trustworthy”, “reliable” and “consistent” candidate. But after they have been hired they are often looked over. They do not get as much appreciated as they should. This is when they get demotivated. They start worrying less about their work because there is no one to appreciate their good work. A hard-working employee has a lot of potential if s/he is praised in the right way. The best way to do it to take notice of every employee from the lowest paid employees to the highest-paid employees. Soon you will be looking for employees to promote, how will you decide if you are not paying attention? Praise every employee you seem worth praising, do not leave it. Tomorrow it will lose its effect.
- Make it more personal: Praising an employee in front of the entire team is great but while you do that it might seem that you were praising the entire team not only the person who was behind the team making it produce better results. The best way to encourage and motivate this person might be calling him/her into your office and praising them for their efforts. This way they will know that their boss knows who really worked hard with the team to produce the results.
- Help them in developing: Overpraising employees might get you in a position where all the staff wants a raise and promotion. This can not happen though. The other way to praise an employee is to do it indirectly. They know they work well and they are good in their field but a hard-working employee will keep seeking opportunities where they can learn more. This could be your chance to show that you appreciate them. Help them improve their work. They will also feel good that their manager is giving them extra attention. But do not do it in a way that the other team workers feel bad about it.
- Be specific: While praising keep in mind to be specific about it. The more specific the praise is the more effective it will be. Being specific while praising will tell your employees where they are doing well and where they still need to improve themselves. If you keep praising them on one aspect and will not praise at all on the other aspect they will soon figure out where they need to improve themselves.
- Do small things for great results: To praise the employees, managers could come up with an idea such as remembering their work anniversaries and giving them a card or other mementos to let them know you care! A card or handwritten work way better than praise over the call or a text message. A written note or card shows you cared enough to take some time out and actually write what you thought about that employee. It will leave a positive effect on employees.
If you did not like any of the above ways to praise your employee they praise them in your own way. You just need to get your feelings to them does not matter what way you choose.
Dr. Malini Saba, Founder & Chairman, Saba Group & Anannke Foundation.
Dr. Malini Saba is one of the very few self-made leaders in the commodity industry, and the first woman owner and CEO in the commodity space. She has helped millions of underserved women and children in South and Southeast Asia, South America, Africa and the U.S. to gain access to life-saving medical, educational services and achieves economic stability.
Views are personal.