When’s the last time you were recognized at your job? What immediate feelings did you have when this happened? Whether it’s a simple “thank you” or an office party was thrown in your favor, everyone likes to be appreciated.

While there are many reasons workers can choose to leave their jobs – the pursuit of better pay and perks high among them—the main reason for quitting is a lack of a career path or growth opportunities, according to a 2015 employee survey by Randstad USA, a staffing firm. This is particularly true for younger generations, who seek real-time feedback and recognition (and rewards) for work well done.

Mostly small businesses are more mindful of acknowledging good work and presenting opportunities. 75% of small business employees agree with the statement, “In the last year, I have had opportunities to learn and grow in my job,” and 80% say they feel appreciated at work— compared with just 71% and 69%, respectively, of large business owners.

80% of small business employees say they feel appreciated at work

While larger companies are catching on to the importance of gratitude and purpose within employee ranks, many still fall short in the eyes of their employees.

At the end of the day, like increases like. Whatever has momentum will tend to continue to exist and grow. Newton’s first law of motion applies in terms of workplace dynamics as well. “An object in motion continues in motion with the same speed and in the same direction unless acted upon by an unbalanced force.”

If you complain and focus on the negative, you can expect to find every single aspect of your work environment that supports your narrative. Finding ways to apply an unbalanced force to yourself or others who seem to be stuck in a cycle of negativity is the only way to change the inertia of your workplace.

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