It’s Exciting When Leaders Get On Board with Recognition

Whenever I visit an organization that has senior executives who are exemplary recognizers, it’s a whole different ball game. Leaders who know and understand the importance of recognition really drive the rest of the organization in making recognition happen.

Typically, these leaders have set an expectation that giving good recognition is part of the way their organization does things. They are visionary leaders who lead their organizational culture and acknowledge people who live the values. They are purpose driven. These leaders are present at as many recognition and award events as they possibly can. And if they cannot attend, they will assign another top recognizing leader.

Leaders who are on board with recognition see it as the right thing to do for their people. They have also seen the benefit that comes to the organization when you treat your people with respect and value them and their contributions.

Looking at their recognition strategy (note, they have one) you will find their C-suite leaders endorse it fully in word and deed. And that includes budgetary support, leadership actions and reinforcing management accountability on all strategic recognition initiatives through performance management and feedback. 

See if your leaders demonstrate any of the following attributes as recognition leaders.

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What Your Leaders Can Do To Lead Recognition

Senior leaders are a powerful force for driving recognition giving across the organization. Their attitudes and, hopefully, exemplary practices, become a beacon and benchmark for others to follow–whether good or bad.

Here are three ideas to explore with your leaders to help you elevate recognition in the eyes of all employees. (more…)

Sure Fire Ways To Get Leaders On Board with Recognition

Some leaders get it and some don’t. There are those who have strong people skills and understand the value of giving recognition well. Then are the others who question the purpose of recognition and the expense associated with it.

How can you guarantee getting leadership support and their personal commitment to making recognition happen?

Think about the following ten steps before heading into a meeting with a leader or your senior leadership team. (more…)

The Most Common Problems With Creating a Recognition Strategy

You all know the importance and wisdom of creating a written recognition strategy. WorldatWork states 55% of companies have a recognition strategy as of 2017. Of those with a written recognition strategy, 95% of them are aligned with the organizational strategy.

Many things hold companies back from producing such a working document.

Here’s what I have observed as the most common problems. And I will share some ideas with how to solve them. (more…)

You Shouldn’t Have To Convince A Leader About Recognition

I love this quote from Marcus Buckingham,

“Great managers don’t need to be reminded of the power of praise.”

I think he’s right.

In those organizations where recognition flourishes as a way of doing things, you will always find leaders who get it. They know the importance of recognition. They personally strive to practice giving effective and meaningful recognition. And they encourage everyone to be exemplary recognition givers. (more…)

7 Simple Ways Leaders Can Improve Recognition

You meet Keira, your new boss, in the hallway at work. You now report to her about your responsibilities in administering the company’s employee recognition programs.

She’s a good leader and heads compensation and benefits. But employee recognition is new to her. She’s only just been assigned the recognition portfolio.

You know her qualities and feel you will work well with her. You feel her intentions are solid and sincere towards recognition.

As she converses with you she asks you what your expectations are of her as your new leader. And she also asks you how senior leaders as a whole could help improve recognition throughout the company.

How would you answer this leader? What ideas come to your mind?

Consider the following 7 simple ways that recognition practitioners have recommended to their leaders and shared with me in the last several months. (more…)

Quick Solutions For Dealing With Recognition Program Problems

On Tuesday I presented a session at the Recognition Professionals International conference in hot and humid Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

My session was on dealing with How To Make Positive Changes To Your Recognition Programs.

At the start of the session I asked the practitioner and provider attendees a question. The question was, “what are the biggest challenges or problems you struggle with for any of your employee recognition programs?”

Here’s what the recognition professionals gave me, which were written up on a flip chart:

  • Consistency
  • Out-dated
  • Unaware
  • Push back from leadership
  • Misinformation
  • Management buy-in
  • Measuring ROI

The rest of the session I focused on providing people with the process and tools for making improvements in a systematic way rather than just waiting for things to break, so to speak.

Quick Solutions to Problems

To specifically help those who attended my session and to assist all of my readers, I am including a few links to past posts to address some of these challenges.

1. Consistency: My suggestion on getting more consistent with using your recognition programs and practicing better recognition giving read Recognition Programs Aren’t A Problem…People Are! And if your leaders are not exemplary givers of recognition or using your programs consider Are You Helping Your Leaders to Give Recognition?

2. Out-dated: I told the seminar participants that I go out on a date every week with my wife, Irene. In fact we are going to see a children’s performance tonight of “The Wizard of Oz”. But on a serious vein, with recognition programs they do need to be kept revitalized. Try out this post for some ideas 7 Deadly Warning Signs Your Recognition Program Is Failing.

3. Unaware: I won’t pretend I’ve written on every subject related to recognition. This is probably one of them. That’s why I love it when you send in your challenges and ideas. They often become posts. My best stab at this is to suggest you read When Recognition Doesn’t Work and perhaps even 7 Simple Hacks to a Great Communications Plan to stimulate your thinking.

4. Leader Push Back and Buy-In: I combined these two because I think they are related. Leaders are not expected to know everything about employee recognition. That’s your job. So educate them and keep them informed like this Communicating with Leaders Using the “CNN Effect”. Furthermore, I taught those in my seminar that you don’t want leaders’ buy-in. Buy-in is so monetary focused and transaction. What you really need is their personal commitment and you can discover more here How To Win a Leader’s Commitment and Buy-In for Recognition.

5. Misinformation: Nada! I will have to think on this and get back to everyone on it.

6. Measuring ROI: Hmm! I realize I have not written a blog post on this topic specifically. But to help you along, here’s a related post on Understanding the Business Case for Recognition. I am not going to leave you high and dry though! If you don’t mind leaving this page and going to Incentive Magazine, here’s my Top 10 Tips for Solid Recognition ROI. Hope you enjoy it!

Once you’ve wrapped your head around a few of these topic areas please let me know what other questions still remain for you.

Question: Where do you go to learn more about employee recognition practices and programs?

Never Underestimate The Value Of Senior Leader Endorsement

Employee recognition is everyone’s responsibility, no doubt about it.

But there is something about having the personal support and endorsement of your senior leaders that propels recognition to a whole new level.

The 2015 WorldatWork Trends in Employee Recognition Survey showed only 34% of managers felt they had a high level of support from their senior management team for employee recognition programs.

Your goal should always be to get a senior leader’s commitment to making employee recognition practices and use of recognition programs a high priority as part of your company’s people strategy.

You can then prove to them how recognition can help them achieve the business goals you all want to see reached.

Don’t ever underestimate the value of an executive endorsement for employee recognition. (more…)

How To Win a Leader’s Commitment and Buy-In for Recognition

We keep hearing recognition managers and practitioners expressing frustration with being able to get executive “buy-in” for employee recognition initiatives.

This hits home when people are seeking budget approvals before proceeding with a new or evolving program.

Before you can ever get senior leader buy-in and financing for a program you must first gain their personal commitment. Commitment is personal, emotional and long term.

 Buy-in is simply transactional, monetary and short-term.

Your job is to get senior level support for making employee recognition an effective organizational strategy…plain and simple.

Follow these 5 simple strategies to get senior leaders support for employee recognition. (more…)

Top 10 Reasons Companies Fail with Employee Recognition

An OfficeTeam survey discovered a disconnect between managers’ and employees’ answer to the question, “How effective do you think your company is at recognizing employees for good performance?” It seems 89% of senior managers felt their organization was good at showing appreciation to workers. But only 70% of employees gave their firms high marks for acknowledging their achievements. Start correcting this gap through addressing these Top 10 Reasons Companies Fail with Employee Recognition today. (more…)