How to Demonstrate Respect at Work

Everyone, no matter what they do or where they work, deserves to be respected by their bosses and coworkers. A fair and respectful workplace is necessary for the success of any company or organization. That is why it should be particularly emphasized throughout your onboarding process. Respect in the workplace should begin from the first moment your employees become part of your company, and it should continue until their last day. Leaders in your company should be examples for the rest of the employees by living up to the company’s values and morals. An unhealthy workplace culture can lead to less productivity, turnover, low self-esteem, and can even affect the company’s reputation. Here are some ways you can demonstrate respect within your company.

Listen to Your Employees

One of the simplest and most effective ways to show respect to your employees is by listening to their input and actually taking action. Encourage your employees to speak up during company meetings and share their opinions or suggestions. This will help your employees feel valued, and you may even get interesting ideas by being open to new points of view. People who feel included and valued by their employers are much more likely to be productive and passionate about their work. 

Compliment Your Employees’ Achievements

Often, employers take for granted the good work their employees do, especially the “small” things. It is important to keep in mind that absolutely everything your employees do, big or small, will have an effect on your company. Learn to recognize when your employees put an extra effort in what they are doing and compliment them. This will make your employees feel noticed, and will in return motivate them to keep up the good work. 

Keep Your Word

If you promised an employee a raise, give it to them. If you said you’d get your employees a new water fountain, follow through. If you offered someone time off, do not take it away. It’s as simple as that. If you take your word back, it will make you seem unreliable and disrespectful. When you don’t keep your word, you show that you don’t respect the person you are dealing with, which in the workplace can cause trouble.

The actions people consider to be disrespectful can vary depending on their culture, religion, the way they were raised, etc. Some examples of behaviors people may consider disrespectful are chewing gum or  talking too loud, taking credit for other people’s work, not cleaning up after yourself, borrowing supplies and not returning them, complaining too much, telling offensive or inappropriate jokes, etc. Some of the behaviors listed above may seem silly, but it all depends on perspective. You can learn to identify these and act accordingly. If you believe that a coworker is offended by everything you do or say, try pulling them aside and asking what you're doing to upset them, and adjust your behavior accordingly.

When employees feel disrespected by their employers, they automatically lose respect for them as well. A workplace where there is no mutual respect between managers and workers is not a healthy one, and will have bad consequences for the company.