Let’s set the scenario that you haven’t really been very good at giving recognition. It hasn’t been natural for you since you’ve only been a supervisor for less than a year. The leader you report to has set a performance management expectation for you to give more frequent recognition. They based all this on a recent employee engagement survey and the division you’re in didn’t do so well.
Now, HR has recently conducted training to show all supervisors and managers how to use the new online recognition program they launched at the beginning of the year.
But you have a problem. You’ve been hearing from workers that they don’t know how authentic and meaningful your recognition really is.
Here are some potential reasons this might be something you might need to work on.
Many in the recognition industry parlay about what people “said,” or what others have “seen,” on one survey or another, suggesting to the world that recognition improves employee engagement.
Some consultancy firms indicate where recognition “occurs,” whatever that means, that organizations have better employee engagement as well as improved key performance metrics. Recognition industry vendors indicate how many managers or employees “say” recognition made so many things totally awesome, such as employee engagement.
But what “people say” on a survey is not exactly sufficient proof.
My purpose for this post is to convince you to make some changes. Strive to build positive relationships on a regular basis with your employees. This is an essential practice to develop in order to improve the value of nonmonetary recognition.
When you have a positive relationship with your staff, you are creating a foundation on which to build employee recognition, employee engagement, and a complete employee experience. This positive relationship strength between a giver of recognition and the recipient helps to enhance the value of the recognition and show the authenticity of the recognition expressed.
I’m going to share with you some principles to apply in fostering a more positive relationship with your employees and those you work with.
Employees know if you are an exemplary leader at giving recognition.
They even tally up in their minds who you have recognized and who you haven’t. You’ll find there is a collective psyche that calculates if you have a positive or negative relationship strength with your employees or not.
The quality and level of this relationship strength affects how recipients and peers perceive the recognition.
Are people watching how you recognize employees? What would their observations say about the recognition you give to people? How do you measure up in the eyes of your employees?
When I phoned overseas to my Dad in the South of England, I would often ask him how he was doing. His standard reply for many years was, “I’m fine…it’s the others.”
Recognition giving follows a similar pattern to my father’s response to life.
You can actually give genuine recognition to someone for their demonstrated actions or results. But, does the recognition you give to one person have any impact, positively or negatively, on the other employees who work with that recipient of recognition? (more…)