Have you ever felt unappreciated at work? Then you understand how important recognition in the workplace can be. Workplace recognition motivates, provides a sense of accomplishment and makes employees feel valued for their work.
Gallup research finds that “only one in three workers in the U.S. strongly agree that they received recognition or praise for doing good work in the past seven days.” Employees often feel that their best efforts are routinely ignored. Those who do not feel adequately recognized say they are twice as likely to quit in the next year, research found.
How do you recognize your employees?
If you own a small company, you may feel that you can’t afford employee recognition. But you would be surprised how inexpensive it can be to make your team feel appreciated.
Here are a few small ways you can recognize your employees for a job well done:
- Treat them to a meal: Who doesn’t like a free lunch? You can also bring lunch TO your employees — catering food in for your team is a great way to show them that you appreciate their efforts.
- Distribute non-cash rewards: Consider giving gift cards to a coffee shop or restaurant, scratch tickets, movie tickets, or other commonly-appreciated gifts that will let them know you appreciate them, while giving them a reason to have some fun.
- Throw a competition, party, or potluck: How about a fun break from the norm? Appreciation doesn’t always have to mean direct praise. Consider throwing a baking competition or a soup- or chili-making competition — something that will allow your team to show off their hidden talents. You could throw a deep-dish pizza potluck on April 5 for National Deep-Dish Day (check out http://www.nationaldaycalendar.com for more ideas) or allow your employees to bring their pets to work one day.
Don’t forget to say ‘thanks’
- Give shout-outs: Public acknowledgment is a great way to inspire and motivate, while rewarding team members for a great job. Use email blasts, announce at company meetings, and use other company-wide communications. It is a great way to recognize employees. And, it’s free!
- Encourage peer-to-peer recognition: Recognition is great coming from a top manager or executive, but it’s also appreciated from peers. Get everyone involved. Give your team ample opportunity and encouragement to recognize one another. It is as simple as circulating a card or nominating an employee of the week. When everyone gets involved, everyone is invested in the process!
- Just say thank you! It’s a simple gesture, but a powerful one. Do it verbally or in a note. Let employees know when they’ve done a great job and give thanks for their hard work.
Be creative when rewarding and honoring employees
Be creative and whatever you come up with to honor your employees, make sure you are being genuine, and that it comes from the heart. Appreciation only works when it’s sincere. Don’t just offer recognition for the sake of morale — offer it for a job well done and offer it all year round.
Giving praise is just what your office needs for a happier, more productive environment.
The professionals at BCN Services have ideas for improving your workplace climate and productivity. We have tools and resources to help your business succeed. Contact us anytime for assistance with your HR needs or call 800-891-9911.
Lisandra Garrow, Partnership Manager