In the United States as well as Canada, the first Friday of March is unofficially celebrated as Employee Appreciation Day. Although it is still gaining in adoption, many companies have taken to celebrating this day to strengthen the bond with their employees. Various studies have already revealed that employee appreciation or recognition plays a large role in increasing employee engagement in the workplace. In this blog post i am going to share some of the employee recognition best practices, which will help your organization to increase employee engagement.
Employees who receive regular recognition and praise:
- Increase their individual productivity
- Increase engagement among their colleagues
- Have higher inclination of staying with their organization
- Receive higher loyalty and satisfaction scores from customers
It is great to have an entire day dedicated to appreciating and recognizing employees. Gradually, the trend could even be accepted globally. In the meanwhile, what else can you do to make sure these individuals are engaged in their work?
Here are some employee recognition best practices:
One of the most, if not the most important factor when it comes to recognizing employees for their efforts is when you do it in real-time. That is, do not wait for the standard annual reviews or any set duration to appreciate any or all tasks being done exceptionally well. You might also like to read Recognition is the primary factor of engagement
When you wait for prolonged durations or for the right time, you delay giving feedback which dilutes its impact. It could even be demotivating to that individual if he/she feels that their efforts did not get due appreciation and prevent them from giving their best from that onwards.
Another possibility is that you could either completely forget about this achievement or get hazy with the details if it has taken place a long while back. Thus, it is best to give positive feedback immediately on completing difficult tasks or overcoming obstacles with innovative solutions while the details are still fresh in your mind.
Not just top-down recognition:
Some companies still follow the same old procedure of top-down recognition. Here, only the managers have the authority to recognize or appreciate good work being done by their team members. Recognition is not something you can restrict to a manager-subordinate relationship.
Nowadays, individuals in the organisation work across teams and departments. So, their managers may not have the exact information of exemplary efforts being taken by their reportees. They may miss out on a golden opportunity of giving these individuals due recognition for their stellar efforts.
In any organisation, team members should be able to recognize the efforts of their peers as they get to see first hand who is working well and who is not and thus give feedback accordingly.
Recognition should be specific:
Even with the best of intentions, if a manager recognizes the efforts of an employee but gives a vague feedback, it will have little impact on that individual. The feedback will come across as having been given for the sake of it or to follow some hollow workplace practices.
Make sure, when you appreciate the employee’s efforts, be very specific about:
● What were the steps taken to accomplish the task
● What was the result of these efforts
● How did it impact their overall and team goals
It helps to have such a detailed feedback as they can leverage it in their future endeavors. Plus, they get to know that work is truly appreciated and definitely has an impact on their team’s goals. That is a huge motivation!
Private or Public?
Should such a feedback be given in private or public? It is recommended that whenever you give positive feedback, you give it publicly in front of all their peers and team members. It provides an incentive to others to give their best as well so that they too can receive such praise in front of the others.
A word of caution: while positive feedback should be given in public, make sure that you give any negative feedback in private. Getting admonished in front of their team members for poor performance can be demotivating to that individual. So instead, talk in private and discuss solutions to improve performance levels.
Integration with your performance management process:
Whenever you recognize the efforts of your employees, make it a habit of noting it down. Especially if you have a performance management software in your organisation. When it comes to reviewing performances, you can easily retrieve these feedback and determine who performed well in which durations. Thus, performance management process can become a breeze and truly efficient at the same time.
Gamification of recognition:
Today, gamification is on the rise and will continue to do so in the foreseeable future. Gamification of recognition will not only enable employees to recognize each other’s efforts but it will also make the entire process fun.
A simple thank you goes a long way. That’s why employee recognition is known as one of the most low cost, high impact employee engagement initiatives. It’s never too late to get this habit and best practices integrated within your workplace. And steadily, you will definitely see an improvement in the overall company satisfaction levels.
With this document, we provide you 20 awesome and creative ideas to make your Employee Appreciation Day really special for you. We sure do hope you will have an awesome time with your teams.
I hope this post has given you ideas about some of the Employee Recognition Best Practices, that you can implement in your organization and which will drive growth and success for your organization.