Recognition leads to retention. When employees’ work is acknowledged by colleagues and superiors, they become more engaged and fulfilled. This helps the employee, and the company, perform better. There is no better time than now to make it a goal and take action to give your employees the recognition they deserve.
Before sharing tips, let’s define employee recognition according to HR Council:
“Employee recognition is the acknowledgment of an individual or team’s behavior, effort, and accomplishments that support the organization’s goals and values. Recognition is not one-size-fits-all. Thought needs to go into what would be appreciated by the person being recognized.” (Source: HR Council)
Keep reading for some simple, effective ways to recognize employees.
Think about the last time someone you work with told you, “You’re doing a great job!” How did it make you feel?
For most of us, a genuine recognition for strong performance can be a powerful motivator. 50% of employees believe being thanked by managers not only improves their relationships but also builds trust with their higher-ups (Source: Cicero Group).
You can start by adding a thank-you section to your weekly meeting or video call. A simple “thank you” or “great job” can announce your employees’ accomplishments in group meetings so everyone can hear of their successes.
Sharing tips to encourage peer-to-peer recognition is a great way to get multiple employees engaged and show appreciation for their performance. In fact, 41% of companies that use peer-to-peer recognition have seen a positive increase in customer satisfaction (SHRM/Globoforce).
Social recognition is a free, valuable way to give your top performers the credit they deserve. You can give a shout-out on social media, through email, on a bulletin board in the office, or by using your payroll and HR software.
Give shout-outs for birthdays, work anniversaries, and any other personal accomplishments. Sometimes recognition for one accomplishment can be shown in multiple ways. For example, an Employee of the Month award is something employees will look forward to and work hard to earn.
Use Actions More than Words
Sometimes the employee just wants to be shown you care about them as a person (vs. just a person working a job). 69% of employees would work harder if they felt their efforts were better appreciated (Source: SocialCast). This can be achieved by not only listening to your employees' ideas and suggestions but also acting upon them.
If their idea isn’t logical or realistic, explain why. If you think it’s a good idea, don’t just agree with them but share their idea with upper management. If your employee raises a concern in the workplace, give that concern to the correct person who can make a change to better the work environment. If an employee has shown the characteristics and skills needed to perform in a higher position, promote them. At the bare minimum, thank them for sharing their suggestion, give a logical explanation as to why you may or may not follow through with the idea, and encourage them to continue to make suggestions.
Sometimes your top performers deserve more than just a shout-out or pat on the back. You can give a gift card, treat them to a nice dinner, buy them a coffee, or give them a raise or bonus. Some companies, as an example, award their top sales reps with a vacation for exceeding their sales goals. While this is not physical money in the employee’s pocket, they'll enjoy getting away from the office, feel appreciated for their hard work and effort, and get to bond with the team and management.
While the above are proven ways to recognize your employees' performance and keep them happy, go ahead and ask your employees how they specifically would feel the most appreciated for their work. With a diverse workplace, one person might prefer a free lunch, while another might find a handshake from the President more meaningful. Start a conversation. Engage with your staff, listen to them, and recognize their hard work and they will reward you with increased sales, better customer service, and longer loyalty to your company.
Looking for software that can help facilitate this? Schedule a demo below and see how Dominion can help increase employee engagement and help you better recognize your employees.