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Forget a pay-rise, Aussies want a praise-rise

Images: Getty
Images: Getty

If you’ve ever thought, “I’m not being paid enough for this,” you’re not alone.

But, it might be worth shifting the complaint to, “Am I being praised enough for this?” new research by employee engagement company, Reward Gateway, suggests.

More Australian workers (44 per cent) are motivated in the long term by appreciation for their hard work than with a pay rise (38 per cent).

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Additionally, 62 per cent of employees said financial incentives have little to no effect on their motivation.

The problem is that without motivation, employees are more likely to see a decline in mental health (55 per cent), productivity (54 per cent), and the quality of their work (41 per cent).

The ramifications extend outside of work; with 34 per cent of respondents saying their diet suffers if they’re not motivated and 29 per cent said their relationships suffered.

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Are we satisfied?

Not really. Nearly three quarters (74 per cent) of respondents said their managers should do more to inspire them, while 43 per cent said they feel unmotivated because they feel undervalued or invisible.

Employees, unsurprisingly, also don’t like boring or unsatisfying work (43 per cent).

“It’s clear that employers can be doing more to motivate and engage their people in the right way,” Reward Gateway group director of product and client success, Rob Boland said.

“From our research and our experience with thousands of businesses with whom we’ve worked, the companies driving the greatest commercial results are the best at addressing employee motivation.

“These businesses centre their engagement strategies on strategically recognising their employees to boost visibility for great work, communicating openly and honestly with their employees, and surveying their people regularly to understand how to constantly improve and adapt their strategy.”

According to an American survey in 2013, 50 per cent of employees believe turnover would fall if their managers just recognised their efforts more.

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And, 2017 research from the Harvard Business Review found the way colleagues “narrate others” can have a huge difference in morale. It suggested four ways for colleagues to support and praise each other.

Make good first impressions

“Be imaginative and share details that highlight the ways in which the person is interesting, and describe them as someone others would want to get to know. This is especially important when you’re introducing a new hire to your team,” the report author, David Wheeler wrote.

Talk about each others’ values

“So when you bring together a new team, tell stories about each person’s potential contributions to the group.”

Describe your colleagues positively if they’re being put down

“Sometimes we observe a colleague being socially undermined. Perhaps they are being interrupted or silenced, either intentionally or not. When someone is put down by others, or is fighting to be heard, we have the opportunity to build them up by talking about them positively.”

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This means giving credit to each others’ ideas, backing them up and ensuring they are heard.

Look after your colleagues when they leave

“Whether it was their choice or not, use a colleague’s exit to create meaning for someone.”

For example, if a colleague is made redundant, they may feel disconnected and hurt. However, colleagues have the ability to support each other in hard times. This could be putting together a box filled with pictures and positive memories of working together.

So what are you waiting for? Go make someone’s day.

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