I don’t know how it happened, but somehow we are rounding the corner toward the holidays already! It’s during this time of year that we start to shift our focus towards gratitude and taking care of the people around us. This carries over from our friends and families to the individuals on our teams. Showing appreciation for our team isn’t just a nice thing to do when spurred on by the spirit of the season, it’s essential for the success – and retention – of our teams.
I think we have all reassessed a lot through this pandemic life of blending our home and our work lives. I know I have. Though I miss the people, I don’t miss the planes! As a result, a lot of us are making big and small changes in our lives. It’s like we all got a wake-up call of what works and what doesn’t. And for many, this means they’re leaving their jobs. The media has coined this, “The Great Resignation.” This trend has people talking and thinking about why; why are people leaving in droves – what’s missing?
Could it be that people are feeling unappreciated at work? News outlets report individuals are seeking employment opportunities that allow them to be dynamic people with rich lives outside of work. If this is true, then retaining our employees could be as simple as connecting with them on a human level.
It’s human nature to crave acknowledgment. As we see over and over again, a pat on the back doesn’t just impact the individual. It benefits the whole team.
- Engaged teams are productive teams. When people are recognized for their contributions to the team, they are more motivated to take on more responsibility and take greater pride in their work. This creates an organically productive and more autonomous work culture
- Less turnover means more satisfaction. We’ve all been there. A team member leaves and it’s up to us to pick up the slack. Not only do we have to shoulder their responsibilities, but we often have to walk alongside their replacement as they learn the ropes. Having to do this often can breed resentment inside our teams. When our teams feel acknowledged, seen, and heard turnover decreases.
- Purpose drives loyalty. When team members feel as though they are part of something bigger than themselves, this ignites a sense of purpose. If the team needs you and you need the team, there is a sense of camaraderie that can’t be manufactured. Loyal teams inherently create an environment of mutual appreciation, which in turn feeds that loyalty.
As we approach the holidays, make an appreciation for your teams a top priority and you will reap the benefits of it. Want to shift the culture of your team, seek to infuse a culture of connection. My book, The Connector’s Advantage can be a great start.
Better yet, do it as a team-building activity and host the book club and micro course just for your team.
This year let’s do something creative. Let’s give the gift of connection.