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  • Writer's pictureSusan & Renée

Beyond Donuts: Employee Appreciation & Why It Matters

Updated: Sep 6, 2023

We love food. Sometimes our favorite part of the day is deciding what we’ll have for lunch. Or what snacks we’ll provide in our meetings with clients. Yes, we feed our clients. It seems to provide stamina for problem solving and innovating.

It also communicates to our clients that we care about them. Feeding people is a great way to show you care.

But if you want a company with motivated employees who are loyal to you and your vision, the perfunctory box of donuts dropped off in the break room will only get you so far.

Trust us, if your staff problems could be fixed with a taco run, what would follow is our taco truck menu.

There is a tendency to hold individuals accountable for poor performance and bad attitudes but company leaders also need to consider the role that company culture plays in creating disgruntled employees. Broken systems, poor working conditions, degrading treatment, and micromanaging are some common culprits.

Not only do unhappy employees bring everyone down, they are expensive. Every time you lose an employee you’ve got to pay the costs that come with hiring, onboarding, training, loss of productivity as a new employee goes through training, and customer service problems and errors that naturally come with new employees.

According to the Center for American Progress, the cost of replacing an employee is between 10 and 30 percent of an employee’s annual salary.

In addition to these tangible costs, when turnover is high other employees become disengaged and the culture of the company suffers.

When someone leaves, others take time to ask why.

The solution lies in becoming a company where people are proud to work.

Both your bottom line and your stress level benefit when systems make sense and employees feel valued.

Research shows that organizations with engaged employees

  • Outperform those with low employee engagement by 202%

  • Have fewer safety incidents, and

  • Have higher net profit margins

Appreciating employees can be done with money but also with how you treat people.

When employees feel valued, they give you a big return on what you invested in them.

Will there be some people who take advantage of you?

Yes. It’s inevitable that at times you will get burned. It’s the cost of doing business.

Let them go and move on.

We recommend that you continue to feed your people.

But also take actions to ensure that your company culture lifts people up, empowers them to give you their best, hears their ideas, and recognizes their contributions.

Stay tuned for more discussion of concrete ways you can do this.

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