Praise is still the secret to employee loyalty

Key Statistics: –        If staff felt more appreciated: –        84% of workers would be more loyal to their companies –        71% of employees would work harder –       100% of workers would stay in their jobs longer –        Companies don’t appreciate their employees: –        Just under 50% of UK employees have never been thanked by their companies –        Line managers are better at recognising their subordinates than companies: 71% get thanked by their direct bosses 100% of respondents would stay in their jobs longer if their companies thanked them for their hard work more often and more effectively.  Research released today by mobile communications company O2 reveals that praise is important to employees of British companies.  If companies were better at acknowledging when staff put in extra effort, 84% of workers would be more loyal to their employers and 71% would be more willing to go the extra mile when required. The online viral survey, which sampled 500 people from across the UK, reveals that line managers are good at thanking their employees, but company-wide ‘thanks’ is less widespread.  71% of respondents do remember the last time their bosses rewarded them personally for hard work. In contrast, just under 50% of workers had either never been thanked by their companies or could not remember the last time. A quarter of workers were thanked verbally when they had done well. Just under 16% had been thanked via email and approximately 26% received gifts such as chocolate or discounts to tourist attractions to recognise their efforts. When asked what sort of acknowledgement employees would like to receive when their companies thank them, one in four chose an extra day off. Over three quarters of the UK workforce reported that they would feel more valued if their companies introduced little perks when they had done well.  Dominic Mahony, HR Director, O2 UK commented, “The loyalty message in this research is clear. Companies need to be seen to recognise the efforts that employees make to ensure their success and, if they do, those employees will reward them by staying in their jobs longer and going the extra mile when required.” He continued: “Praise from line managers is really important but UK businesses need to ensure that this is supported by recognition at a company level.  More importantly, companies need to make sure they are appreciating people in the right way; people don’t just want cash.  Work/life balance initiatives such as a bonus day off have been highly successful with our employees here at O2.  It also makes good business sense to give your employees treats that they will value such as tickets to sponsored events as we do for the O2 Wireless festival*.  Most companies invest significant time, money and effort into thanking loyal customers and we believe that the same principle should apply to your employees.  After all, happier staff are more engaged, which means a more productive, loyal workforce and a better customer experience.  This link between satisfied employees and contented customers is a key driver of O2’s success.” *The O2 Wireless Festival is a multi-stage music event held annually in Leeds and London.  In June 2006 it was held at Hyde Park, London, with headline acts including David Gray and KT Tunstall, and at Harewood House, Leeds, featuring The Who and Massive Attack.