When was the last time you felt you were recognised for your work? Have you yourself thanked someone at work recently for a job well done? Or are you thinking, why should you even need to thank someone just for doing their job?
We spend a third of our lives at work, so it is crucial to our health and wellbeing that this is a positive experience. People are less likely to feel or express gratitude at work than anyplace else and actively suppress expressing gratitude. A survey by the Australian Psychological Society on Stress and Wellbeing in Australia Survey found:
- 45% of Australians report being stressed at work
- Only 50% of working Australians reported that their employer valued their contribution and cared about their wellbeing
- Less than 50% reported they receive regular feedback and recognition for their work.
Benefits of appreciation in the workplace
Appreciation is good for employee engagement, motivation and retention and can create a positive company culture and strengthen relationships. Employees respond to appreciation expressed through recognition of their good work because it confirms that their work is valued. Happy people work harder and if employees believe their superiors are grateful for their work, employees benefit by having an improved sense of worth to their company.
Companies with a higher sense of purpose outperform others by 400%, much like Zappos, whose culture has heavily influenced our own. After establishing a successful and profitable business, Tony Hsieh, the CEO of Zappos, applied research from the science of happiness into running his business. He wanted his employees to have a higher purpose and feel they were part of something bigger than themselves by prioritising happiness in work and life. Zappos now has a world renowned workplace culture, with less than 2000 employees, receiving 32,000 job applications a year and earning over $2 billion in revenue.
Tony shows how a very different kind of corporate culture that focuses on happiness is a powerful model for achieving success. Our team is encouraged to read his book, Delivering Happiness, to help understand the goals of our culture and to embed the same ideals and values that they strive for.
How we thank our team
Gratitude should start from the top and be encouraged through every level of the company and businesses should provide time and opportunities for this to happen. We use Wooboard as an online recognition / gamification system, where team members can ‘Woo’ each other to show appreciation for something well done that aligns with our values. At our weekly, whole of team meeting, team members nominate Winners of the Week, and we present the Disk of Destiny to one person in particular who has embodied our values. Each team member has a weekly 1 on 1 with their team lead, where they can exchange feedback and discuss any issues.
Through establishing our company culture and implementing small practices like that, we have fostered a happy and healthy working environment, ranking #3 in the 2016 BRW Best Place to Work study.
Why a simple practice can change your workplace
You might not become the next Zappos, but there is value in placing a high priority on employee happiness. The positive effects of using something as simple as showing gratitude are far reaching and have proven successful for us.
It is important to understand the power of simple practices in the workplace. By implementing gratitude into company culture, employees are more willing to share their positive feelings with others, whether it’s helping out with a project or taking time to notice and recognise those who have gone the extra mile. Gratitude rewires the brain to see and process the world differently, and if cultivated in your company, can contribute to increased profitability and productivity.
If our culture is something you’d like to learn more about, please see why we’re a great place to work or check out our current positions and apply now – we’d love to hear from you!