Appreciation from Managers is an Act of Retention in Business and at Work

A dear friend and colleague of mine posted on social media last week:


79% of employees who quit their jobs cite a lack of appreciation as a key reason for leaving.


They were referring to a study entitled Performance Accelerated:

Based on a 10-year, 200,000 person study of managers and employees, this white paper unveils new tips, including groundbreaking statistics, strategies, and benchmarks for increasing employee engagement, retention, and results.

In the same study:


65% of North Americans report that they weren’t recognized even once last year.

Appreciation means different things to different people. A mere thank-you thrills me personally to no end. For others, kudos in front of the team is what motivates them.

Whatever form or circumstance appreciation takes place, it cannot be legislated, e.g., as a program of the month. It must be authentic, heartfelt and tied to actual performance / results. Earlier in my career, I was handed $100 in gift cards during my first week in a new job, because my team was being rewarded for an accomplishment that took place before I was hired. I tried to give the gift cards back; they were not returnable in that culture. So I saved the gift cards to buy supplies for our team’s holiday party that year.

As an HR practitioner, I know that employees almost always leave their managers when they quit their jobs.  I also know that employee turnover (e.g., recruiting, replacing and training a new employee) can cost an organization thousands of dollars per employee.

Often, organizations will rely on outdated exit interviews in an attempt to address the issue of employee turnover. All exit interviews accomplish is confirming the above data.

When hiring, promoting and evaluating your organization’s managers, are you rewarding how managers authentically appreciate and recognize their employees?  And if your managers are not capable of authentically demonstrating appreciation consistently to their employees, are your managers in the right job?

Periodic (and authentic) employee appreciation by managers is an act of money-saving retention, in business and at work.


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