Verbal praise motivates employees

EXCLUSIVE: Giving staff verbal praise can have a significant impact on employees motivation, especially in a year when pay rises may be off the agenda, according to research by employee engagement organisation People Insight.

Its research, How cash-strapped businesses can motivate staff without the need for a pay rise, was compiled from a range of employee engagement surveys carried out with employers and their employees in 2012.

The research found:

  • 49% of employee respondents believe their managers reward success.
  • 26% of employee respondents said managers do not identify training and development needs.
  • 80% of employer respondents think their team is satisfied with their management skills, while only 58% of employee respondents agreed.
  • 91% of employer respondents believe they spend time coaching their team, although only 40% of employee respondents agree.

Tom Debenham, managing director at People Insight (pictured), said: “We have all been in jobs where we’ve felt undervalued or taken for granted, but those feelings can have a huge effect on how people work; efficiency levels drop, they start looking for other jobs or they simply sit at their desks and moan.

“In times of austerity, where many organisations are looking to tighten belts rather than open the chequebook, it’s important that managers realise the positive impact of engagement, seeing their workforce as individuals and encouraging personal development.

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“One thing that comes up time and time again in our surveys is how important verbal praise is to people. We all need reassurance and this has such a positive effect on their work environment if a manager is prepared to go out of their way to thank staff for their efforts.

“Everyone needs to feel engaged in their job and the figures are quite eye-opening within [organisations] that do this well; efficiency increases, staff turnover plummets and profits increase.”