What is Respect in the Workplace?
Respect is a feeling when you treat someone well for their qualities or character traits, but respect can also be a manifestation of dignity towards people. Respect should be the norm in the workplace, regardless of personal feelings. Employees and managers should respect each other as it creates a good work environment, which increases employees’ productivity.
You can find the certain characteristics and abilities that you admire in your teammates and show them respect based on it. The problem many firms are facing these days is a lack of understanding of the concept of respect in the workplace. Respect is an important element in every workplace as it helps the employee to work hard as their efforts are appreciated. Team members won’t necessarily love or admire the personalities of their leaders or colleagues, but they still need to respect their work to achieve their goals and be professional. Employees value two different types of respect:
✔️ Respect as a person, which should be shared equally with all team members. This respect is ensured by courtesy and the creation of a space where each member of the group is valuable.
✔️ Well-earned respect or respect for professional achievement lies in the recognition of individual employees for quality tasks performed. This is how the manager can highlight employees who have exceeded expectations. It is a confirmation that each employee has unique strengths and talents. The respect earned meets the need of each person to be judged for good performance.
What is the Importance of Respect in the Workplace? (Explained)
Once you understand why respect is important, it becomes even more important. You will be able to begin to understand why your colleagues are responding in certain situations and take steps to create a more positive work environment with everyone involved. When people feel respected, they show respect for others.
Some of the benefits of respect in the workplace are as follows:
Respect Reduces Stress
Reducing stress is especially important for the health of employees in the workplace. Dear, stress-free employees feel more comfortable sharing ideas and working with colleagues to achieve their goals. Increased respect and reduced stress have both mental and physical effects on workers’ health.
Respect Increases Productivity and Collaboration
Respect helps employees to think innovatively and work hard as they know that their ideas would be appreciated. Such workplaces become an opportunity to learn from each other, where both employees and managers develop their skills. Once your employees start collaborating, cross-training and informal learning can be done across all areas of your company.
Employees can be happy with their work and leave at the end of the day feeling proud of what they’ve done. This sense of satisfaction from employees can benefit employers in the long run. Satisfied employees usually want to stay with companies that value them and are looking for ways to advance or develop their careers. Satisfied employees are more likely to apply for internal promotions and lead their teams with the same respect and care that they used to value. Lower employee turnover turns into less revenue and time spent on training and onboarding.
Respect Creates a Fair Environment
One of the most important things an employer can offer is the opportunity for employees to showcase their skills and knowledge regardless of their background. Respect prevents people from playing favorites, and everyone has a chance to be heard. A Good Chance is a powerful tool for enabling different employees to participate. Every employee has the same voice as his colleagues, and all ideas are appreciated, no matter where they come from. In the right environment, employees can thrive if allowed to contribute equitably.
Related: Our Connecting with Respect Program will help you create a culture of respect in the workplace.
9 Ways to Show Respect to Colleagues in the Workplace
Communicate in a polite, humble manner, use an extremely-friendly, warm tone, speak a language that is understandable and accessible to all.
Allow employees to speak up and share their thoughts.
Before expressing your point of view, always listen to the opinion of team members, and only then share your thoughts on a particular topic.
Never interrupt others during a conversation; management should not allow employees to talk in a rude or sarcastic tone.
Important!!! Never scold your team members in front of everyone! All the problems are still recommended to be solved individually, so speak to employees “face to face”. Remember, nothing is as offensive as discussing the problems, mistakes of a subordinate in presence of all the employees of the company. By discussing the problems personally, you also show respect towards employees.
Do not criticize the ideas and suggestions of your subordinates.
Praise your employees for quality work, for any success in their work, even the smallest! Praise for the desire to develop further and encourage it in every possible way. Know how to see and celebrate the positive in each of the employees.
Treat everyone equally, without making someone stand out. Unfortunately, bosses often make the mistake of singling out favorites and ignoring certain people. Separation is nothing more than a manifestation of disrespect for certain people, besides, such behavior leads to an unhealthy environment in the team, the appearance of envious people, and the division of people.
Invite all employees to meetings within the company so that everyone is aware of what is happening, how the company is developing, what problems there are, what are the plans for the future. Provide an opportunity to speak and discuss the problems they are facing. This will make it clear that the opinion of all employees without exception is important in the company.
How to Create a Respectful Environment in the Workplace? (9 Ways to Do it).
Do not Gossip at Workplace
If the news is not confirmed, it is inappropriate to provoke discussion of the topic simply based on rumors. This seemingly harmless act can cause worrisome psychological damage to a person, so avoid doing that.
Do not use Profanity
Even if the intention is good, do not use harsh language or verbally insult someone for any purpose.
Greet People at Workplace
This is another civilized behavior in workplaces. Even if a person is the busiest person in the world, they will still find time to respond to someone’s greeting with the same empathy. Do not ignore people greetings, and walking past them without even smiling seems extremely rude.
Count an Employee Contribution
Appreciating the contribution of employees means that they are performing well, and giving due recognition to the efforts of employees encourages them to work hard. When employees are attributed, their motivation is increased, and if their hard work is not appreciated or attributed, they will be disheartened and become less productive.
Do Not Discriminate Against People
Creating prejudices against a person based on their race, gender, age, intelligence, and appearance should not be promoted at the workplace.
Do not be Insensitive to Employee Needs
Try to effectively address the feelings and needs of others, such as giving a colleague sick leave or giving maternity leave to someone. This makes employees happy and satisfied with their workplace.
Distraction During Work
Avoid talking on the phone during a meeting, not greeting team members and managers are all activities that affect everyone and create a disturbance in the workplace.
Strong Communication Practice
Do not ignore employee’s phone calls and emails & do not disclose the contents of confidential emails to people outside the organization.
Defend your employees, defend them in front of company management when necessary. If certain mistakes were made in your department, in a conversation with the director of the company, in no case shift the blame on employees, but speak on behalf of the entire department. Some department heads very often try to shield themselves personally and blame a particular employee. If you strive to create a strong and friendly team, learn how to intercede with the leadership, and only later solve the problem individually.
Benefits of Giving Respect to Each other at the Workplace
Respect at the workplace increases motivation and productivity among employees.
It helps to maintain the discipline of an organization, and also employees perceive that they are treated equally without any discrimination.
A respectful person will be able to effectively and professionally deal with the workload and difficult tasks at the workplace.
A respectful environment helps employees to rationally deal with an unmanageable situation without losing their patience.
A respectful environment reduces workplace stress, problems, and conflicts. It helps in improving communication and teamwork.
Respect helps to promote a positive culture, which increases employee satisfaction as employees feel happy and motivated while working in such an environment.
The Effects of Lack of Respect at the Workplace
Conversely, a lack of respect can do real damage. 80% of employees who are not respected in the workplace spend significant time thinking about poor managerial attitudes, and 48% deliberately reduce their performance. Also, disrespect is often spread among colleagues and transferred to clients. In all but the most toxic workplaces, fostering a respectful atmosphere in an organization does not require an HR policy review or other formal changes. Rather, there is a need to constantly search for different methods by which respect can become an important part of the workplace.
Disrespect leads directly to a serious loss of productivity, as a huge amount of time is spent on conflicts or trying to resolve them. Rude behavior, inappropriate tone, inappropriate activities such as being late for appointments, sending rude and unwanted emails to colleagues, gossiping, manipulating clients and colleagues with misinformation, and wasting time surfing the internet, instead of work. Also, can escalate into illegal dismissal or harassment lawsuits.
Ignorance at the Workplace
When employees ignore their colleagues or ignore their opinions, those who are not respected tend to be defensive, making it difficult for them to trust someone at work. In such an atmosphere, everyone feels a little hostile which indirectly affects their productivity and performance at the workplace. When managers ignore their employees or deny their opinions then such, they become unproductive as managers constantly ignore to appreciate their hard work. According to the Department of Public Human Resources Management of the US National Institutes of Health, effective teams are the foundation of business success, but disrespect from colleagues makes teamwork nearly impossible. People are moving from command consciousness to self-preservation. Rudeness is also insidious because it is difficult to justify. This does not sound like overt verbal abuse or violence, but it ultimately leads to a lack of cooperation, open hostility, and mistrust between colleagues.
Higher Turnover Due to Lack of Respect at Workplace
Many people would prefer to leave high-paying, prestigious jobs for seemingly lesser opportunities just because they are unhappy in a hostile environment. A 2012 Gallup poll found that about 17 percent of workers quit their jobs because of bad relationships with managers. Wages, bonuses, and benefits are not worth the stress and associated health damage they cause, and only about 22 percent of workers quit because of money. Employees usually leave such jobs in which their opinions and efforts are not respected because they can work efficiently where they are respected.
Impact of a Respectful Work Environment on Business Goals
Respectful employees work effectively and come up with better and unique ideas that increase the market share and revenue of an organization.
Respect helps in building strong teamwork which is necessary for generating profit in an organization.
A strong and positive relationship with clients is necessary as it helps in increasing revenue and a respectful work environment helps employees to work effectively to achieve maximum client satisfaction.
A respectful work environment helps employees to share their ideas and concepts without any fear and such interactive workplaces can easily stand out in a competitive market.
Reducing politics in the workplace will also help increase the productivity of teams.
Respect for the workplace will help improve communication between colleagues, improve teamwork, and reduce stress as the workplace is peaceful.
9 Inspirational Quotes about Respect Which will Help Bring Positivity in the Workplace
“If we lose love and self-respect for each other, this is how we finally die.” — Maya Angelou
“I speak to everyone in the same way, whether he is the garbage man or the president of the university.” — Albert Einstein
“Treat everyone with respect and kindness. Period. No exceptions.” — Kiana Tom
Every human being, of whatever origin, of whatever station, deserves respect. We must each respect others even as we respect ourselves.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson
“If we lose love and self-respect for each other, this is how we finally die.” — Maya Angelou
“Knowledge will give you power, but character respect.” — Bruce Lee
“Respect is a two-way street, if you want to get it, you’ve got to give it.” — R.G. Risch
“We are not A TEAM because we work together. WE ARE a team because we respect, trust, and care for each other.” (Vala Afshar)
“One of the most sincere forms of respect is listening to what another has to say.” ― Bryant McGill