What We're Into: Showing Appreciation, via Top Producer Magazine

Photo by Flickr user Florian Bugiel

At Connect the Grey, we use an integrative approach to working with businesses: What are the underlying and interlocking reasons for the challenges that companies face?

One important area that often gets overlooked is employee engagement and emotional well-being. That's why we enjoyed this Top Producer column on the importance of employee appreciation. Top Producer is a magazine published by Farm Journal Media, and is also the host of the Executive Women in Agriculture conference, which our founder Janie attended this past fall. "An Undervalued Asset," published in November, is a letter from the magazine's editor, Sara Schafer.

"Appreciation, gratitude and thank-yous cost you nothing but can pay dividends," Schafer writes. She cites research on how important it is, both in organizations and in personal relationships, to recognize and acknowledge people's contributions.

And showing appreciation means more than just saying thank you. According to Daniel Shapiro, the researcher that Schafer quotes, deep appreciation involves genuinely seeking to recognize and see the value in other people's perspectives, and communicating that you understand their viewpoints.

In advocating for showing appreciation, Top Producer illustrates that while employee engagement often requires simple behavior changes and no major financial investment, it has a big impact on productivity, performance, and commitment to the work.

How do you show appreciation at work? Do you work with people or organizations that are especially good at expressing gratitude? Share your thoughts in the comments!