I sat in an employee recognition session at the IMA Summit last week at the Snowbird, Utah resort. A participant I know shared their experience with the group that opened my eyes to a very important point of view.
You can sit down with each of your employees and ask them questions about their recognition preferences. Your online recognition and reward programs may automate the entry of recognition choices and how they prefer to be recognized. You can do this with onboarding or any time during their career.
However, what this individual raised was a critical point. Employees’ recognition preferences are not static.
It allows you to ask the questions you are curious about. You also get to ask those questions of people in the real world and find out answers. And you can even go further, if you really want to. You can compare your findings with other groups of people and see if there are any correlations.
I love to ask questions about employee recognition.
So, I ask you, do you know how much great recognition means to people?
Perhaps you think the idea of asking employees about their recognition preferences is a hard thing to do. Doing so might be the best investment of time you’ll make in connecting better with your employees.
Recognition is such an individual experience that you must encourage everyone in supervisory and management positions to discover how their employee likes and wants to be recognized.
These are some quick suggestions for how to do it and what to ask.
Schedule a 15-minute sit-down meeting for each of your employees and individually ask them about their personal recognition preferences. If they are remote, simply conduct the meeting over the phone or by videoconference.
The secret behind giving more personal and customized recognition is to ask your employees. (more…)
It was a busy day at a suburban branch of a retail bank and the customer service representatives (CSR’s) were kept constantly busy with serving long lines of needy customers.
Air conditioning didn’t seem to be working the best that day and it was getting kind of warm in the bank. The bank manager had already called head office to arrange for air conditioning maintenance people to come and fix things.
The CSRs did their best to smile, pause briefly between customers to calm themselves, and patiently serve each customer with their individual banking requests.
By mid-afternoon, something unusual happened.
The bank manager walked behind each of the half-dozen or so CSRs and placed a cold can of carbonated drink on the counter next to each employee as they served the next customer in line.
Some of the CSRs were able to look up and smile back at the manager and others said thanks if they could.
But it was several minutes later before each CSR realized how special their manager’s actions were.
She had not given every CSR the same carbonated beverage. No, she had made sure to know what each of their favorite drinks was. Armed with that insight she had purchased a single can of pop that each CSR liked best.
For those CSR’s this simple but special action spoke volumes to them and showed them their manager appreciated them and the work they were doing.