Too often all the hype, communications and marketing goes into the launching of a new recognition program.
Then there is nothing. All is quiet. You can hear the hum of the photocopier machine.
If you want to keep recognition alive and well and top of mind you need to communicate and market recognition all year long.
That’s why you need to create a corporate recognition communications calendar.
What Is a Recognition Communications Calendar?
A recognition communications calendar is a planning tool for organizing the messaging around employee recognition you want going out to managers and employees in your company.
Think marketing and communications all focused on getting people to give better and more frequent recognition to people at work throughout a calendar year.
By having a calendar you can organize, plan and schedule what type of recognition message goes out when.
You can position the focus you want to achieve in any given month, or year, using the best channel or medium to get the effect you want to achieve.
By creating a strategic planning approach it allows you to see the big picture.
It also gives you insight as to where you need to delegate content creation, prepare for enlisting collaboration with other department resources, and where to involve senior leaders who can be hard folk to schedule.
Your Recognition Communications Calendar Includes
Here are some key things for you to consider with planning out your Recognition Communications Calendar.
- Direction: What is the strategic mandate from senior leaders about employee recognition? What communication objective(s) do you want to reach this year?
- Planning: Consider monthly, annual and seasonal themes and events and the reoccurring messages that need to repeat themselves each year.
- Structure: Generate some recognition related categories to stimulate content ideas, such as recognition skills and behaviors, recognition program information, learning and development, etc. This all helps for creating an editorial calendar for the entire year.
- Channels: Identify all the potential communication channels and mediums that are available to you in the company. Email blasts, newsletters, intranet site, bulletin boards, posters, etc. Don’t forget social media and offline content such as pamphlets and tent cards for the cafeteria.
- Audiences: Create a profile or persona for the different audience needs across the company. This allows you to identify what recognition principles and practices apply or not to each specific employee group. Your crafting of content will be completely different for manufacturing employees versus corporate head office staff.
Consider the Communication Channels
Some communication channels are better suited to a particular audience type over another. Similarly, the type of recognition message being given may lend itself to a specific medium too.
- A one-pager giving an example of an employee living the corporate values or how they made a difference in some way would be great with staff that have daily shift meetings to hear about and read.
- Ensure a recognition presence on the front page of your company intranet site is perfect for those with computer access. Make sure you are regularly updating the your recognition page with stories, content and updates so recognition is always fresh and exciting.
- Frontline managers can benefit from video training and webinars to learn how to give better recognition and how to best use any of your online programs. Make sure recognition gets on the learning and development curriculum and offer to be a support to them
- And don’t forget the town hall sessions, staff meetings and one-on-one opportunities. Provide guides and tips for how best to present well-deserved awards and how to express appreciation to staff the right way for the great work that happens each and every day.
Making the Recognition Communications Calendar Available
These days there are free tools for giving digital access to your Recognition Communications Calendar like using Google Docs and Google Calendar.
You can also subscribe to online digital calendars through services like CoSchedule. Any digital access allows other team members to access, add to and update the status of the different communication projects.
Having a Recognition Communications Calendar will help you achieve your recognition goals so much easier.
You’ll be able to batch the different types of content you need and develop some pieces at the same time.
It also gives a strategic view for senior leaders to know their role and the future direction the company is going in with employee recognition.
Bottom-line? You can’t afford not to have a Recognition Communications Calendar.
Question: How do you presently organize your communications for employee recognition at your company?
Roy is no longer writing new content for this site (he has retired!), but you can subscribe to Engage2Excel’s blog as Engage2Excel will be taking Roy’s place writing about similar topics on employee recognition and retention, leadership and strategy.