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Everyone Struggles
Let's Not Make That An Excuse

September 10, 2009

Appreciate The Effort

I came across a very well written post on why people quit their jobs and I knew I had to write this one.

I remember one colleague of mine saying the words “That’s why people quite their jobs, they are not happy and they choose to move on and keep doing it unless they find one”.

The statement came at a time when I was amusing myself with sarcasm when I saw a mail from the HOD (head of department) asking to explain on an email received from the client side. All this happened when I took a loo break.

Before that an email from the client appreciated my team efforts for delivering in a short time. The HOD also acknowledged our team effort on the same email.

What amused me that day was the way the boss chooses to change sides without trying to find out what happened. It kind of reflects how much trust he has on his own team.

Anyone who has worked would know that the number of your mistakes pointed is always higher than the times your work has been appreciated. I would put that in a ratio of 10:1.

An office environment is nothing short of being in a sports team where everyone’s contributions decide the final outcome. Very few people actually realize this and treat their team in such a way.

I remember doing a presentation in one of the session how an employee morale gets affected with and without feedback being received.

The first stage was about the employee who joined the organization trying to give his best. In the second stage he feels lost when his efforts don’t yield the appreciation/recognition that he was looking for. In the third stage he loses his enthusiasm to give his best which results in bad performance without a feedback. With a feedback, he knows where he stands and gives his best and that gets him rewards & promotions.

In reality, the feedback session is nothing short of being told where one should improve and reminded of their past mistakes. Appreciating an employee rarely happens unless it’s outstanding!! How many of the employees manage to do that?

There is also a perception among the management that if they appreciate the work of the employees, it would send out a wrong sense of hope that they would be moved up the ladder. This is totally wrong!!

Not everyone aims of becoming a leader, how is one suppose to lift a team member’s morale without appreciating the effort he/she has put in, irrespective of the outcome? Does cribbing, pointing out their mistakes are going to make them do things right? The answer is NO.

People choose to work for various reasons, and not everyone is going to follow the office ethics!! It’s a myth if people think it works, no wonder office politics sustains because of the above reason, often finding people who are incapable to inherit the much desired position. Then again, it’s the management who holds the control over how much politics should be allowed to exist.

We end up spending most of our time in office than at home, which only keeps getting longer as one moves up the ladder. It does makes a difference on one’s state of mind on how one is treated.

Everyone likes to be appreciated once in a while. A small pat on the back, telling someone that they are doing a good job goes on a long way to boost one’s morale.

I have observed that unless one does an outstanding work, one’s work will never get appreciated even if it’s a good effort. How many times are people able to deliver outstanding work? Very few!!

Where does that leaves an average employee? No wonder after a certain period of time people quit as boredom sets in and the constant reminder of how bad one is doing.

If one wants employees to stop quitting, start appreciating the efforts not the result, and one could see the difference…


Choco said...

"There is also a perception among the management that if they appreciate the work of the employees, it would send out a wrong sense of hope that they would be moved up the ladder. This is totally wrong!!"
You made such a valid point in this post...One gets appreciated only when one excels. Then one gets an award for the same...And then the very next month some one else does...And then one feels miserable...not to mention like one has to prove themselves all over again...

Sorry about the ranting...Your post just made so much sense to me..I couldn't help it :)

Rakesh Vanamali said...

Very pointed observations here! Most often, like you have rightly said, trust is a very crucial factor and needs to be furthered and built every moment, which is a very rare happening!

And yes, like choco has mentioned above - "There is also a perception among the management that if they appreciate the work of the employees, it would send out a wrong sense of hope that they would be moved up the ladder. This is totally wrong!!"

Totally agree!

Grayquill said...

Being grateful for a person doing their jobs is an important part of respect from boss to staff member. It is more important that management continually places in front of the team, the high purpose and high value of thier work. A person who understands his work is important and makes a difference needs little praise. All good work has high value.
Purpose is a much greater motivator than praise.

Sunil said...

You know this is one of the biggest Ironies of human life. We discuss bad things about others & envy others achievement.
I too face such situations and I just remind myself the above lines.

Never compromise with your values & try to get happiness out of that. You'll start enjoying your work.

Have a nice day!

The Survivor said...

@ Choco

Thanks :)

@ Rakesh

Thanks Mate. Trust is the first point in any kind of relationship to move ahead without it...

The Survivor said...

@ Grayquill

Completely agree!! Purpose is a great motivator than praise but sometimes one does gets lost when one is not sure where they stand...

@ Sunil

Very well put Mate :)

Yes, if you live for something, you won't fall just for anything!!

Shanu said...

You are so right!

I have seen ppl leavin inspite of not gettin a raise in pay or position and the major reason behind this is that ppl simply get bored of the monotony and want chnge..and unfrtly more often thn not these are the ppl who never climb up the ladder..movin aimlessly from job to job.

But whether we like it or not.. appreciating effrts is much more diff thn appreciatin results..bcoz the results are tangible..effrts are not!

Grayquill said...

Yes - I agree. We all need encouragement - praise is a powerful encourager

The Survivor said...

@ Shanu

That is the problem!!

Teams in a sport don't go on to win every game even if there effort is a good one but its how one handles the loss is something that needs to be learned.

That's why appreciating good efforts does makes a difference!!

@ Grayquill

That's true