Many employers believe it’s unnecessary to reward employees for a job they are getting paid to do, but what employers need to understand is that materialistic reward systems are not at all the same as recognizing employees and acknowledging the effort and commitment they put into their work. Rewards tend to be a broad and impassive “high-five” to the employee for an overall job well done, but recognition is entirely about being noticed for a specific task or series of tasks undertaken especially well. In fact, the more precise and singular the task being recognized, the more effective the gesture is in motivating the employee.
However your company decides to recognize employees, what’s most important is that the gesture is meaningful to the recipient and lets them know that their performance is being noticed for its exceptional qualities. People want to feel like the work they are doing is making a difference, and that their presence and effort means something to their superiors. When recognition gives their efforts a sense of value, their morale is uplifted, and as anyone in the workforce knows, morale is infectious. When one person feels valued, chances are others feel the same. Likewise, if one person feels bitter and underappreciated, their negativity is likely a sentiment empathized by the entire team. When morale is high, the chain reaction begins: negative stress among the group and individuals is considerably reduced, absenteeism drops and retention rates go up, and all of this leads to higher productivity.
To give the gesture of recognition the greatest meaning to the employee, make sure that you’re acknowledgements are made public. If the employee is being singled out in front of his or her peers, the acknowledgement feels all the more unique and consequential. This also sends the message to other employees that with hard work, their efforts will be distinguished as well. Bear in mind that each employee has strengths and weaknesses, so don’t recognize only the achievements that are great for the entire company, but give credit to employees who excel beyond their usual skill levels or who overcome a particular personal weakness on the way to accomplishing something new.
“Thank you” is a phrase greatly underused in business, and as long as there is meaning behind it, it can never be said too much. Distinguishing your employees for their hard work and making them feel meaningful to the company shows them that you are invested in their success. When you’re invested in your employees, you’re invested in the future of your company. Check out our website or give us a call at 1-800-824-2930 or 480-966-1175 for more information on how you can show your employees just how much they’re valued.