Employee recognition programs are important for employee appreciation. They keep up employee motivation, satisfaction, and enthusiasm. These employee recognition programs usually come in the form of R&R, Annual or Semi-Annual award ceremony.
When an employee receives an award you can actually see the conviction and pride in their eyes. Giving an award to an employee is one of the best ways to recognise their work. Only a few things can beat the feeling of getting an award in front of all your work friends, colleagues and leaders.
But for how long does this magical feeling last?
How many days or instances does it take to lose that feeling?
A day? A week? Maybe a month?
What happens then?
Let’s talk about one of the major challenges that comes with awards and employee recognition programs in the workplace.
You can’t give an award to all your employees
When deserving employees win awards they inspire us to go the extra mile and achieve big goals. We are proud to see our leaders and seniors win awards.
But what about the ones who work hard but still are unable to win? The feeling becomes more conflicting when these employees see their colleague receive an award but not them.
Here’s a famous quote from the popular movie 3 Idiots:
We learnt something about human behaviour that day, it feels bad when a friend fails, but it feels even worse when he comes first.
Although it’s embarrassing to admit, it’s true. People get disappointed when they put in all their hard-work and efforts but still don't get the chance to be appreciated with an award.
So, what do you think would be an ideal way of rewarding your employees? A way that recognises the efforts of deserving employees without compromising the morale of others? After all, it's about employee recognition that impacts the entire organisation.
Say “Thank You”
It's the easiest and most effective form of showing employee appreciation to keep your best employees.
The value of an award is not just the reward, it’s what the reward represents. A “Thank You” from a peer or from a manager represents trust, respect and higher expectations.
Here's a simple example of how a senior leader would proceed with it-
After reading this email Jamie would be definitely smiling. Also, that his seniors consider his efforts and his energy is not going to waste.
This is what a single email can do for your employees as well. It shows that they matter and it’s not only during performance appraisals or awards where their work is evaluated.
Moreover, recognition doesn't have to be out in the open. You can always share it among a small group of people. Perhaps, even privately.
6 ways to build successful Employee Recognition Programs for employee motivation
Describe a multilevel type of recognition so that employees feel valued. There doesn't necessarily have to be just 1 particular way to do it. In fact, fixed ways make creative ideas monotonous. Design employee recognition programs in such a way that makes them more inclusive.
Remember special dates
Birthdays, work anniversaries, and other special occasions mean a lot to your employees. When you wish them on their special days you make them believe that you value them.
Get curious about what your employees like
As an employer it is important to know what motivates your employees. Get to know more about their likes and dislikes. Recognise them by presenting to them something that they like or admire.
Recognise achievements and milestone completion
Recognising the achievements and milestone completion of employees is another way of showing encouragement. You can share this recognition personally, in a meeting or conduct social media campaigns. In such campaigns, you can set a bar and see which employees are going the extra mile to achieve these targets.
Encourage surveys and polls to collect client recognition
If your employees are involved in client-facing roles then their feedback would give further encouragement to them.
You can request your clients to either share their feedback over an email. Or, perhaps they can share a tweet or a post on their social channel recognising the efforts of your employees.
Introduce peer to peer recognition
Peer to peer recognition is an effective way of boosting employee motivation.
For this, you don't have to go over the top and create a special platform. All you can do is provide little stock cards where employees can write a few encouraging words for their colleagues.
Last but not the least, make recognition easy and frequent
You can make recognition easy and frequent by integrating it with a people management platform. It is fast, easily accessible and simple to manage. Employee recognition programs must become a common practice throughout the organisation so that it becomes a norm. Creating a culture of sharing consistent, positive feedback is what helps companies thrive and become successful.