As a member of Recognition Professional’s International (RPI) for over 15 years, I have been able to learn from, and share insights observed from clients about making recognition happen the right way, with other recognition professionals.
One concern a lot of recognition program managers have is getting the personal commitment and support from their senior leaders.
That’s why I’ve always liked a five-step set of principles from one of RPI’s courses that I think will help you.
You know your organization has an employee recognition problem.
The last employee engagement survey showed an average of 64 percent for all the recognition statements on the survey. Participation levels with the usage of your online recognition programs are inconsistent with leaders and employees across the organization.
Open-ended feedback from employees tells you that many employees just don’t feel valued and appreciated.
There are various stages you pass through when using our recognition strategy approach. First, is crafting of a fitting recognition purpose and philosophy statement that is just right for your organization.
Then comes the identifying of the areas you have to focus on following a recognition assessment. All organizations have strengths and weaknesses. Know where to need to focus your energies to improve recognition practices and programs really helps.
But before you identify those focus points, there is one important thing you have to do. You need to declare what your overall guiding objective is to improve the quality of recognition for the year ahead.
Having articulated what this goal is will help your organizational leaders know what you should all be shooting for. And it helps you personally with an additional criterion point to use in making decisions.
Nothing drives cultural practices better than exemplary leadership from the top. Managers who responded to the survey said that 93 percent of them reported senior leader involvement in recognition programs was very or extremely important. The large majority, or 75 percent, said they were extremely important.
As to the actual involvement of senior leaders, only 21 percent were very involved, with another 53 percent being somewhat involved.
One could surmise leaders play an important role in recognition programs. Yet, what exactly can they do that makes such a tremendous difference?
It seems not enough organizations hold their leaders and managers accountable for giving meaningful and effective recognition to their staff.
These same organizational leaders ask why responses to recognition questions on the last engagement survey did not turn out so well. It is as if it surprised them to see these low numbers. Surely, they would have expected these numbers if leaders regularly connected with their direct reports.
Their problem was they did not hold leaders and managers accountable for recognizing their employees.
Implementing the Recognition Plan for Successful Impact
Many consultants enter organizations prepared to tell the leaders where they are failing in the area of the consultant’s expertise.
The process I have taught you over our four-part treatise on How to Create a Recognition Strategy, headlined the need for you to identify your own recognition strengths and weaknesses before starting the strategy piece.
If you have followed along so far, you will know the importance of crafting a Recognition Purpose and Philosophy statements. Following your assessment of recognition practices and programs you have everything you need to design a complete Recognition Plan to elevate recognition practices and programs in your organization.
That is often where consultants exit the scene. You have a plan with goals set and tactical objectives to make things happen. But then they leave you. And often things sputter out or nothing happens at all.
If there is one thing, I think is essential with a recognition project like this, is to provide you with the tools to implement the plan. Let’s get it off the paper and into action. Focus on moving into the implementation phase.
If you want people to give better quality recognition and to have people recognized more frequently than they are now, then you had better plan to transform recognition with a carefully thought out plan, now.
Your engagement surveys, pulse surveys, focus group feedback, and recognition program data will give you both the qualitative and quantitative read on the state of employee recognition in your organization.
Your job is to work with the leaders and managers in your organization to define and create the future of employee recognition. It’s time to plan out how you will achieve better recognition for 2021 in your organization.
How do you get leaders to be more aware of the importance of recognition and rewards?
Too often, recognition and rewards and the programs you have in place are not top of mind for many people. And when employees themselves are not on board with recognizing others, you know you’ve got a problem.
What does it take to raise the importance and value of recognition and rewards?