Are You Really Giving People Recognition on Purpose?

Do you know why you recognize people?

If you haven’t thought about why you appreciate and recognize people, take some time out to articulate your beliefs and reasons for recognizing the people you work, play, and live with.

For me it is about appreciating people for who they are, independent of any work they do, and valuing everything that a person brings with them to the workplace. It’s about recognizing people for all that they do—both the insignificant and the amazing things people do. 

Recognition is about valuing people and their contributions. It is the transferring of positive feelings and emotions from one person to another, in response to an employee’s positive behaviors or actions.

What is your purpose for giving recognition?

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How To Leverage Recognition to Promote Diversity and Inclusion

Recognition is probably one of the best strategies you can use to promote diversity and inclusion.

I will explain why and how to leverage recognition to support diversity and inclusion.

Recognition should be a way of life in your organization and not just a programmatic offering. If this is the case where you work, then appreciating people for who they are and recognizing them for what they do will be the great equalizer.

Look at some inherent problems we create for ourselves with recognition that is not diversity minded or inclusive.

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Should Recognition Focus on Your People or the Business?

Managers of organizational recognition practices and recognition programs are often torn between focusing on growth of people or on business results.

You’ll find some organizations create elaborate people strategies to prepare for the growth and development of their employees. Talent management strategies prepare now for the future. And recognition is always a part of the equation, especially when measuring employee engagement.

Then there are others who are strictly business. Their goal is to align recognition and rewards with helping to drive and achieve the strategic initiatives of their business goals.

So, the question is whether, as the owner of recognition in your organization, should you focus on people of the business?

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Why I Tell People Not To Create a Culture of Recognition

I was just scrolling through some questions people asked me at the HRPA Conference in Toronto this past January.

One person asked a question that represents the standard thinking of many people. They wanted to know how to create a culture of recognition. The audience there heard my thoughts. Now I want to share them with you.

First off. Please do not create a culture of recognition.

I’ll explain why.

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Embedding Recognition in the Everyday Life of the Company – Part 3

This is the third post in a series on Embedding Recognition in the Everyday Life of the Company. In Part 1, I addressed integrating recognition into your onboarding strategy and practices. Then, in Part 2, I took up how you can weave recognition into your meetings and learning opportunities.

This post will cover more traditional recognition moments such as career milestones (length of service anniversaries) and retirement recognition.

As you read these ideas, evaluate how you are doing with recognition in your organization in these areas, and if there are steps you need to take to improve things.

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Embedding Recognition in the Everyday Life of the Company – Part 2

In a previous post I covered Part 1 of Embedding Recognition in the Everyday Life of the Company. There we looked at how you can integrate recognition practices and philosophy at the very beginning of an employee’s career by putting recognition into your onboarding strategy and practices.

For this post, I will address some additional ways you can embed recognition into some typical work structures and practices that go on in most organizations.

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Embedding Recognition in the Everyday Life of the Company – Part 1

One way that recognition can become a way of life in your organization is to integrate recognition practices and the use of your recognition programs into every facet of the lifetime employee experience.

This is the first of six posts that will outlines different areas along the career path of a typical employee, and where you can embed recognition into their everyday life at your organization.

Let’s take a look.

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Why Are You Working So Hard on Recognition?

Each organization has at least one person in their midst who doesn’t get it with employee recognition.

Which is why when I was in a meeting this week with several representatives from an organization I am working with, someone boldly asked me a question related to a person who is likely a non-recognizer. This courageous individual asked, how do you respond to people who ask, “Why are you working so hard on recognition?”

They are asking how do you address naysayers in an organization. They want to know how they should stand up to these types of people and substantiate the merit of the time and effort they are putting into the cause of improving employee recognition.

How do should you respond to someone like this who is negative, opinionated, and sometimes even derails your efforts to make recognition happen in your organization?

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How To Create a One-Page Recognition Strategy

A recognition strategy is a written document that outlines the purpose, direction, goals, and plans, for you and your organizational leaders to commit to doing, and make recognition giving a way of life and not just a program.

However, according to the latest WorldatWork 2019 Trends in Employee Recognition Survey, only 49 percent of the surveyed organizations have a written recognition strategy.

For that reason, I am helping you with how to create a written one-page recognition strategy to ensure you have something rather than nothing.

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Why Do Companies Not Have a Recognition Strategy?

If you haven’t already heard, there are fewer companies today than 2 years ago that have a written recognition strategy. Wow! That’s a shame.

According to the latest WorldatWork 2019 Trends in Employee Recognition, only 49 percent of the organizations they surveyed have a written recognition strategy. Fortunately, for the nearly half of these organizations with a recognition strategy, 97 percent are aligned with their organization’s business strategy.

The surprising thing was seeing how the percentage of organizations with a recognition strategy declined from 55 percent in 2017 to 49 percent in 2019. I really thought more organizations would commit to writing one. But, alas, I was wrong.

Why would organizations not have a recognition strategy? Let’s examine some possible reasons why this occurs.

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