Appreciation vs. Value

A young leader was sharing with me his frustration about his team of volunteers. “I tell them all the time that I appreciate them. In fact, one man told me I appreciate him too much.  But, for some reason, they just don’t follow through like I wish they would. It’s very frustrating!”

His story reminded me of an article I read in a business magazine. Employees were asked if they would rather receive a monetary raise or if they would want their employer to value them more. Hands-down the employees responded they would rather be valued than receive a raise.

This leads me to a question. What is the difference between showing appreciation and showing value? Here’s my take on it:

  • Appreciation is our response to others based on what they did for us.
  • Value is our response to others whether they did anything for us or not.

Our acts or words of appreciation for the deeds that others perform will fall flat if we fail to value the individuals who performed the deeds in the first place. What sacrifices did they make? What investment of time, money and self went into their actions?

In December, as you purchase small gifts for your volunteers and workers, ask yourself how you can value those individuals. Then, do what you can to show that value.

How do you differentiate between showing appreciation and showing value?How can you show value to others?