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.
You’ll hear a comment from a leader questioning the import of your wanting to create a recognition strategy. Another leader glosses over the latest engagement survey results and states that 56% percent on the recognition questions is good, isn’t it? These are all real scenarios.
Now I am well aware this does not describe all leaders. But there are enough to cause concern.
A few of them don’t understand why some employees are complaining about a lack of recognition. They think they pay their employees well and they have good jobs. What more can they want?
Sounds like it’s time to let your leaders know what it feels like to be unrecognized.
There’s a big difference with how recognition is perceived by people in different parts of the world.
When I was working in India, for example, I found the people there had a preoccupation with getting tangible or monetary rewards. Why? This was mainly because the pay employees earned in India was so low their goal was to meet basic needs. If they could receive any additional money they would take it.
In France, they too found rewards more important than say verbal appreciation. However, this was not for economic reasons. For the majority of managers I dealt with there, they felt that recognition was too much of an “Americanized” rah, rah, exercise. They gave the “touchy-feely” complaint. I had to remind them that I was originally from England, and now a Canadian. I also told them that the recognition I had received, so far, actually felt pretty good.
The irony is, that in all fourteen countries, I’ve been to, including India and France, a majority of employees indicated through engagement surveys that they did not feel valued and appreciated for the work they did. They lacked recognition, beyond rewards and pay.
A subscriber, and manager, from South Africa, raised the concern of how senior leaders would not permit managers and staff to practice giving recognition to one another. They even had a hard time enlisting HR’s help with making real recognition happen in their organization.
What would you do in such a situation? Can one manager impact an organization to make recognition happen?
Following are some suggestions to consider when leaders get in the way of employee recognition. (more…)
One of my biggest concerns about learning employee recognition skills is how companies are relying too much on training.
You are well aware that training is about learning how to do new things especially if you don’t know how. It is providing opportunities to practice those skills and transfer what you have learned out of the classroom, or online course, and into the real world.
But, you may have seen, as I have, that managers often receive the training and nothing really changes.
My advice to you is to make sure you couple any training you provide with education.
Ask yourself if you are educating your people to give recognition versus just training them to do so.
Education is completely different than training. I found that out later in life. (more…)
No matter where in the world I have been and asked to conduct a Recognition Strategy session – whether in Columbus, Ohio or Mumbai, India – the end product has always been amazement at the simplicity and depth of what the people in the room just created.
What is a recognition strategy?
It is a written declaration of what leaders in an organization believe recognition really is and what it means to them. It also shares why they intend to practice recognition giving for the benefit of employees, for their customers and even for their shareholders.
Going into these sessions everyone involved always thinks they know exactly what recognition is.
Surprise! Not so. It often takes a little bit of education first to differentiate between rewards and recognition before we can proceed.
So, what must you absolutely have in order to create a well-crafted Recognition Strategy?
There are actually three things that you must have in a Recognition Strategy: (more…)
For many years when giving workshops on how to be more effective and authentic in giving employee recognition, I often use the words “Beliefs – Behaviors – Results” in a PowerPoint® slide or on flip charts to help participants understand the power and differences of recognition and rewards.
It was much easier to talk about how one can impact behaviors and results than it was beliefs. Beliefs, of course, seemed so much more personal and unchangeable. Yet how often did faulty beliefs, hang ups and barriers get in the way of noticing and appreciating people’s great work.
Can we really do anything to alter people’s beliefs in the learning environment? Can we change people’s minds? (more…)