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Last week I had lunch with an old friend and client. About three years ago 
his manufacturing company suffered a severe bout of negativity.  He needed hand to get rid of this unproductive attitude.  He bounced ideas off me for several months.  It was a great day when he felt he had finally turned things around.  He came to lunch with a list of ideas that had worked for him.  He thought my QuickBites readers would be able to benefit from his tough experience.  I am more than happy to forward to you his suggestions for getting rid of negativity.
  • Listen, listen, listen. Often people just need a sounding board.  
  • Ask open-ended questions to determine the cause, and the scope of the negative feelings or reaction.  Help people find options, and feel part of the communication and problem solving process.
  • Provide opportunities for people to make decisions about their own job. Almost any decision that excludes the input of the person doing the work is perceived as negative. 
  • Provide appropriate and very visible leadership. People want to feel as if they are part of something bigger than themselves. If they understand the direction, and their part in making the desired outcomes happen, they can effectively contribute more. 
  • Provide appropriate rewards and recognition so people feel their contribution is valued. The power of appropriate rewards and recognition for a positive workplace is remarkable. This is one of the most powerful tools an organization can use to buoy staff morale. 

Finally he concluded by saying that it's no surprise that employee negativity often stems from feeling unappreciated.  Simply recognizing employees and the work they do can solve many, if not most, negativity issues.


He admonished leaders to check their own attitude and actions and evaluate how well they're instilling a good atmosphere at work. He asked if you are coming in tired, irritable, or stressed? If so, you're likely spreading that to your staff. A positive boss is more likely to have positive, productive employees. 


 "Negativity is contagious.  But remember, optimism is contagious too."
--Sam Geist

Employee engagement is such an important subject for discussion and this is such an informative survey that it is presented in more depth here and is the only stat being outlined this week.

Employee engagement is one of the most important objectives for today's HR leaders.  We know we need it.  We know we want it.  We know it boosts our bottom line.  But what isn't always clear is what drives it, and how to get it.

This survey examined:
  • How often and in what ways are employees being recognized.
  • Employees feelings about their jobs, recognition and company culture. 
  • Correlations between engagement, recognition and retention. 
The findings include:

Finding #1:  Employee recognition is on the rise.

More employees in the U.S. work for companies that have recognition programs, and more of them are being recognized as part of those programs.
  • 65% of companies have recognition programs (51 percent in Fall 2011)
  • 50% of employees have been recognized in the past three months (44 percent in Fall 2011). 
Finding #2:  Frequent recognition correlates directly with employee satisfaction.

Employees who are recognized regularly are more satisfied with their work in the company, feel more appreciated by management and are more apt to love their jobs.  For those recognized within the last three months, the satisfaction is evident:
  • 89% feel effectively appreciated by their supervisors
  • 83% feel their level of recognition is satisfactory 
  • 90% feel that their managers effectively acknowledge and appreciate them
  • 76% love their jobs (compared to 37% of those who were recognized only six months ago or more). 
Finding #3:  Search for greener pastures of recognition fuels employee turnover.

Employees are more likely to consider leaving a job for a company that recognizes their employees. In fact, most of them have done just that.
  • 20% of those who feel appreciated are planning to look for a new job
  • 40% of those who don't feel appreciated are planning to look for a new job. 
Finding #4:  Appreciation is the foundation for motivation.

An overwhelming majority of workers said that being recognized motivates them in their work, and another majority said they would work harder if they were better recognized.
  • 78% would work harder if their efforts were better recognized and appreciated
  • 82% were motivated in their job because they were recognized for their efforts.  
Finding #5:  Company culture matters.

While many employees do feel they have a strong and positive company culture, even more indicated that company culture is an important factor to them.
  • 80% considered company culture an important aspect of the company they work for
  • only 55% of employees surveyed think they work in a good culture
  • 45% think their company culture is not strong, positive, or appreciated by management and employees. 
 --Workforce/Globoforce Mood Tracker Survey:  The Growing Influence of Employee Recognition

To access the complete survey which includes these stats see first SITE SEEING link below.
"Until you value yourself, you won't value your time.  Until you value your time, you won't do anything with it."  
--M. Scott Peck, American psychiatrist and author

Comments from survey respondents on employee recognition:

"Recognition makes me believe that I am valued at my company and makes me want to work more efficiently."

"Recognition lets you know that you are doing a good job, makes a person feel proud and good about their job."

"I once worked for a company that never appreciated any hard work.  And I know I wasn't alone - the lack of recognition was across the organization. This is why I now call them my former company."

"My favorite company I ever worked for was one that had a formal recognition but also many informal recognition programs.  It was fun to work there because at least once a week, usually more often, you were recognized in small ways.  It was part of the company culture."  
--Globoforce Mood Tracker Survey: The Growing Influence of Employee Recognition 

To access the complete report see first SITE SEEING link below.


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An enlightening survey focused on the huge value of employee recognition and appreciation.w

This Youtube video has nothing to do with marketing and everything to do with it.  Watch, it's an impressive show of teamwork and planning.  Thanks Gary for sending.  Enjoy!!
Connect with Sam Geist

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Reproduction for publication is encouraged with the following attribution:
From "QuickBites," by Sam Geist.  (800) 567-1861 

Sam Geist lectures, facilitates workshops and conducts training seminars on sales & marketing, the changing marketplace, leadership, differentiation, customer service and staff motivation.  His three books, "Why Should Someone Do Business With You... Rather Than Someone Else?" "Would You Work for You?" and "Execute... or Be Executed" are available in bookstores everywhere, published by Addington & Wentworth Inc.