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 find yourself stuck with finding the resources you need to help with your recognition plans.
Your organizational leaders want you to strategize how to make recognition a stronger tool to use within talent management and creating a positive employee experience. In the meantime, you must continue to manage the recognition programs, encourage managers to give recognition to employees they rarely see in person, and keep leaders informed of the ROI of employee recognition.
Why not team up with your organization or learning and development leaders and find out if your needs for recognition could become a goal for a team of emerging leaders?
This is exactly what happened to us when an organization approached a colleague and I about presenting our thoughts and strategy around employee recognition in the retail industry.
The following happened, and you can follow these steps as a playbook to implement where you work.
Some of us have a hard time recognizing those
around us and especially people we associate with at work.
Historically, people have viewed
recognition as a top-down behavior where managers and leaders started
recognizing employees who reported to them. This likely originated from the
military where senior officers presented medals as awards for specific service
or achievement in military campaigns.
With the reduced hierarchy in organizations
leading to a reduction in middle managers along with online recognition
programs accessible by all employees, they have emancipated the source of who
Recognition is no longer constrained by a
person’s position or title and should be multi-directional.
But there can still be a bias or perception of
who should give recognition. So besides considering who should give
recognition, what about in the other direction? This raises the question whether
some people at different levels of position are harder to recognize that others
Career milestone award or service
award recognition programs have been around for many years.
Over those years there have been
the customary plaques, symbolic crystal awards, and gold watches—and these used
to start when a person reached 25-years of service.
But as tenure reduced significantly
with economy and business changes, and retention of employees was harder to
maintain, career milestones now begin at 5 years and 5-year increments
thereafter. Today, you will find many companies now start career milestones at
an employee’s first year of service.
The reality is, whether you give an
employee something tangible or not, they always have a workplace anniversary
every single year.
How do you plan to make the next
round of your milestone recognition celebrations more meaningful and effective?
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…)
In your role, as a leader or administrator of employee recognition programs and practices, you will often find yourself having to convince, and influence leaders, on recognition programs, budgets, and strategizing recognition.
Human resource leaders, as well as recognition professionals, have not necessarily helped the recognition cause along the way.
For too long, recognition professionals have been relegated to the position of party planners and balloon-blower-uppers, which instilled a negative perception of our role. Senior leaders often see recognition as just trinkets and trash, primarily because of the limited budgets they’ve allocated to recognition, which limits what is available for you to spend. Then there’s the persistent argument, that career milestone recognition is a waste of money because these programs don’t move performance and there’s no ROI from them.
How can you overcome these negative stereotypes? What can you do to convince your senior leaders otherwise? (more…)
The saying goes that it takes all kinds of people to make the world go round
And that’s exactly the case for employee recognition too.
Some of the people you need to help make recognition go well are your leaders.
There is a huge benefit with having leaders on board who are personally committed to recognition. These leaders understand how using recognition practices and programs well, can be a strategic leveraging tool for engagement and performance results.
But not all leaders are created equal. In fact, I have identified 3 different types of leaders in the workplace who can each provide a valuable role.
See if you can relate any of your leaders to the following leadership types. (more…)
You typically have leaders who either (1) “get it” as far as understanding the importance of employee recognition and who support you, or (2) those who are totally out in left-field and even become detractors of recognition.
To give a small indication of this challenge, this year’s WorldatWork Trends in Employee Recognition Survey revealed the highest responded reason for not offering employee recognition programs, with 28 percent, was “no support from senior management”.
My own research in the public sector revealed 93 percent of managers stating senior management involvement with recognition was important, while the reality was only 21 percent were ever involved with recognition programs.
Frontline evidence from the same report showed 40 percent of managers and only 22 percent of individual contributors reported their peers were recognized on a monthly or more frequent basis.
Yet you are expected to receive direction from senior leaders on the course of action you’re to take with employee recognition when they might not understand the positive value of employee recognition.
As a manager or owner of employee recognition what are you supposed to do? (more…)