Make Sure You Care Before Giving Recognition

Too often we see people and ask the question, “How are you?” without really stopping to listen to the response.

You must learn to ask the question, “How are you?” and not only listen for what people say, but also watch for how they say it and the non-verbal cues of their real feelings.

Follow along and learn how to show care and empathy to employees so that they are more likely to believe the genuineness of your expressed recognition and appreciation. (more…)

Incentive Research Foundation Releases 2017 Trends Study

Washington, DC (January 20, 2017): The Incentive Research Foundation is pleased to announce the release of its highly-anticipated 2017 Trends Study. The study highlights ten key trends that will affect organizations, their products and services, and the workforce in 2017. From growth areas to consolidation to globalization, the study identifies key areas of change and their implications for workforce engagement, incentive travel and recognition.

“At a time when the pace of economic change continues to accelerate, the IRF is tracking some essential shifts in the industry,” said IRF President Melissa Van Dyke. “The 2017 Trends Study also provides actionable suggestions so that business can leverage these trends to gain a competitive edge in a rapidly changing business landscape.”

The Top Ten Trends for Incentive Travel, Reward and Recognition Programs in 2017 are:

  1. The Increasing Demand for Non-Cash Rewards and Recognition
    The number of U.S. businesses using non-cash rewards has risen from 26% in 1996 to 84% in 2016.
  2. Mastering the Changing and Challenging Regulatory Environment
    Almost 60% of respondents in the latest IRF Pulse Study said they agree or strongly agree that government regulations are making it more difficult to design reward and recognition programs.
  3. Incentive Travel Market: Growth and Challenges
    Nearly 40% of U.S. businesses now use incentive travel to reward and recognize their top performing employees, salespeople, and channel partners.
  4. Merchandise and Gift Card Expansion
    Merchandise and gift card programs continue to expand in the United States with 60% and 70%, respectively, of all U.S. businesses using these reward types.
  5. Shifts in Safety Perceptions and More Frequent Disruptions
    Zika. Terrorism. Hurricanes. Almost 60% of planners have experienced some form of disruption in their events, estimating that almost a quarter of their events have been affected in some way.
  6. The Emerging “Next Level” of Experience: Individualized Experiences and the Importance of Emotion
    Tapping emotional engagement through a strategic choice of rewards and incentives is a powerful way for businesses to motivate their stakeholders.
  7. Technology Changes
    Almost 90% of large businesses report having technology in place to support their incentives and reward programs.  Technology trends include a drive toward social, wearable, predictive and view-altering technologies.
  8. The Evolving Design of Reward and Recognition Programs
    The Incentive Federation measures over 12 different reasons organizations are running employee reward and recognition programs and nine different objectives for sales programs.
  9. Industry Consolidation
    The incentives and rewards industry continues to consolidate, not only on the supplier side but also among incentive houses and meeting service providers.
  10. Globalization
    Once thought of as only affecting the incentive travel side of the market, globalization now influences all types of reward and recognition programs—merchandise and gift cards included.

How To Make Your People Matter In Meetings

Having exceptional meetings starts with valuing your people and determining what you want them to come away with.

There is a classic cliché definition that meetings are where minutes are kept and hours are lost. However, someone I know recently challenged that perspective by suggesting the idea that every meeting should be a revelatory experience.

If anything, the majority of meetings tend to reveal the harsh reality that little thought went into trying to make them even a meaningful experience. They are often just obligatory time fillers – the cyclical meetings scheduled in our calendars for the standard 1-hour block, with someone dictating the agenda, of little value and even less accomplished.

But what if we could make our meetings more engaging? Imagine showing your employees you value them and their time through changing the way you conduct your meetings. Try these six ways on how to enliven your meetings and show your people they matter. (more…)

Recognition Tip #32: Muffin could be finer.

For a healthy alternative treat for employees, why don’t you bring in some morning muffins to share? You could also engage employees by enlisting participation from everyone. Have each person bake or bring in different kinds of muffins for added variety. Food for thought!


5 Ways to Maximize the Power of Symbols With Recognition

Symbols are powerful tools that have been used as a form of human language since the beginning of time.

Today, symbols in the workplace are best represented in brand and culture.

You can apply symbols to employee recognition practices and programs as well and draw upon their amazing emotional power.

Consider these 5 ways to maximize the power of your company symbols of recognition. (more…)

Can Symbolic Awards Elevate and Motivate Performance?

Okay. Here’s a question for you.

Does giving people awards – specifically to employees – with no financial or tangible reward attached to it, increase performance levels at work?

Many leaders think such awards are purely “nice thing to do” and minimize using them in their company recognition practices. Similarly, there is very little scientific evidence to support giving a symbolic award alone would actually impact workplace performance.

I mean, can awards really elevate human performance solely on the merits of status and social recognition? (more…)

Top 10 Ways to Better Align Your Recognition Programs

To get your recognition programs functioning properly you need to align them better across your organization. Your job is to make the proper adjustments so your programs run smoothly.

Follow these simple steps to align recognition better in your organization by clicking here.

Date: January 10, 2017
Appearance: Incentive Magazine Article
Format: Magazine

The Games People Play

How principles of gamification can help us win at work.

The principles of gamification, or game mechanics, can truly help us with learning and improving our productivity and employee satisfaction in the workplace.

Read the entire article by clicking here

Date: January 1, 2017
Appearance: Training Magazine Article
Format: Magazine

5 Things Your Boss Needs To Know About Recognition

Each manager, supervisor, or business owner comes with their own unique set of interpersonal skills, along with strengths and weaknesses. This is especially so when it comes to giving meaningful and effective recognition.

You’ve likely had a boss or two who understood the importance of acknowledging your work. You had a positive relationship with them. Work seemed to go well and you felt engaged. You knew you were making a positive difference.

Not So Good Managers

Then again, you’ve probably bumped into at least one or two supervisors or had managers along your career path who plain didn’t get it. (more…)

Why Recognition Starts from the Top

ABC Company initiated new recognition programs over a year ago but somehow managers and employees are just not engaging with them. Participation rates are low and there is not much traction yet.

A major healthcare organization knows recognition is very low from reports of the latest employee engagement survey. Trying to get managers to find time to acknowledge their staff has been a real mindset challenge.

In both scenarios senior leadership was weak in leading the way with personally giving recognition and encouraging others to do so.

I will show you how you can get leaders at the top to lead the way with recognition giving. (more…)