This is an excerpt from my book, A Worker's Worth, available here.
There is an abundance of evidence that when employees feel valued, they are more likely to perform better and stay with their employer. However, the act of valuing employees isn’t effective if the employer does it for the sole purpose of performance improvement and retention. That’s still the act of treating people as resources instead of people, and employees react negatively to that. When any employer or person’s communication of value is not real, people can sense it. In other words, someone has to internally hold a sense of value for another person (or people) in order for their choices, actions, and behavior to genuinely convey a sense of value that other people will “get” and appreciate.
It’s easy enough to say that people need to be treated with value, and that employee performance will improve when they feel valued. But this begs deeper questions – what is value? How do we show it? If we don’t understand what it is, we won’t be able to effectively implement the act of giving value. In fact, we may need to enact a personal transformation in order to wield it correctly. That’s what this book is about: What is value and how do we understand it? Understanding what drives our sense of value will help us choose to value things which bring greater meaning and purpose to our lives, which will in turn inspire and serve as a model for those around us. It will also help us understand how our sense of value shows through in our behaviors and choices.