raise the concern that to expect their managers to recognize their employees is
too much on top of everything else they are doing.
it is employees or associates who provide the goods and services that produce
satisfied customers, appreciating your people is the very least you can do.
What they need
to do is to raise managers’ level of intrinsic motivation for recognizing,
praising, and rewarding staff, so they can become proficient at giving
recognition and willing to do so every chance they get.
One way for
people to give better and more meaningful recognition is to first find out what
is meaningful to each of their employees.
I will review
with your key ways to teach and help supervisors and managers to practice this
When you get
involved in a specific discipline and area of practice like employee
recognition, you end up grappling with how to define things that fit your frame
At the same time
you hope you can engage others is seeing things as you do and accepting the
definitions you develop.
Such was the
case with defining recognition when I first began speaking and training on the
topic in the mid-nineties.
industrial company in Canada invited me to meet with them because they had just
reviewed their employee engagement survey results. As is often the case, the
responses to the questions addressing employee recognition were not so good.
first consultative meeting together I asked the leaders responsible for
employee recognition what they were doing regarding recognizing employees.
Following hearing about their existing programs and their total rewards
strategy, I asked them if what they were doing was real recognition.
That’s when one of them sincerely asked me, what is “real recognition”?
All of us are
striving to help people in our organizations feel valued and appreciated for
their contributions and for who they are. We’re also tasked with showing
everyone how to give more effective and meaningful recognition face-to-face and
with using our online recognition programs.
And the only way
we know how well we are doing is by measuring the outputs of recognition
through our recognition programs and through employee perceptions on
recognition received through engagement surveys.
But is there
another way that you can refocus what you measure that will lead to more
have always been a big advocate of the fact that it’s the quality of your
recognition that makes it a big deal.
and time again, I have witnessed how when you put more of a personal touch into
the recognition and rewards you give, the more meaningful and effective the
effect will be on the recipient and on their performance.
have summed this principle up before by saying, when you give people
recognition you don’t have to give them a reward; when you give people a
reward, you must always accompany it with recognition.
I have a social science experiment to share with you that validates this
manager ever recognized you in a way you really didn’t
While not by my
manager, I can recall twice where people recognized me in not
the best way.
Each of these
poor recognition events proved the person responsible for recognizing me had
done no homework. In addition, it might well have been the individual
transferring their own preference on to how they recognized me. And, I also
think one was a cheap, quick and easy way out.
is I did not feel properly recognized.
Have you seen
employees disappointed or feeling a lack of respect with how they’re
acknowledged and recognized?
We will discover
ways for finding out how people want to be recognized.
alluded to two occasions where I received depersonalized recognition that meant
nothing to me? Let me share those experiences with you so we can learn from
Recognition is a
positive form of expression and meaningfully conveyed through the eyes. They
have described our eyes as “the windows to the soul.” Using appropriate eye
contact, when in the right country, can be a great behavioral skill and
enhancer to improving the recognition you give to people.
Your eyes can
become a great connecting force with recognition giving.