Why You Should View Your Employee Recognition Programs as Being Important

Perception is all in the eye of the beholder. 

And if you have a negative perception of something, it can lead to the concept known as the self-fulfilling prophecy. Which is one reason you must view your recognition programs as being very important. 

The online Britannica encyclopedia website defines a self-fulfilling prophecy as the process through which an originally false expectation leads to its own confirmation. 

In a self-fulfilling prophecy, an individual’s expectations about another person or entity eventually result in the other person or entity acting in ways that confirm the expectations.

So, if you believe that your recognition programs are important, others will act in ways that confirm the beliefs of the importance of your recognition programs. 

Creating a Positive View of Recognition Programs 

Valuing more people more often. Know how your recognition programs work, like your social recognition and performance recognition programs. When you teach employees and show them how to use them properly, then they will recognize more people more often. From your employee engagement surveys, you already know that employees want to feel valued and appreciated for what they do. Now, with the variety of employee recognition programs available to you, you’re able to do just that. 

Ensure you are communicating the importance of your recognition programs in meetings, newsletters, and in your education and training sessions. When people hear things are important, they pay more attention to them. 

Better ways to give recognition. In our hybrid work world, where some employees are in physically at work sometimes, and other employees are working solely from home, recognition programs become the great unifier. You can give individuals more timely recognition no matter where they work. This recognition can be more visible to others, if permitted, and others can join in with the acknowledgment. 

Convey to all your leaders how important it is to give recognition to people the right way. Let positive recognition practices carry over into using your programs, too. Give leaders tips and advice on the best ways to use your programs.

Prioritizing recognition in your day. Start off your day to see on your social recognition platform whose birthday or career milestone anniversary is coming up. Send someone a special ecard right away or schedule sending ahead of time. And when great people do amazing things for you or for others, go back online and send a social badge or an ecard acknowledging their performance. Start and end each day recognizing people, as well as in between.

Set the expectation for everyone to make recognition a part of their day, every day. Help everyone with creating small habit behaviors they could do regularly. 

Reach and impact all employees. Recognition programs provide better and easier ways to connect, acknowledge, and recognize staff across the organization. Someone in another department gets something to you in a timely manner, but you may never see them face-to-face. You can thank them in the social recognition newsfeed. Send a special ecard with a well-thought out and meaningful message. Give a nomination for a point-based reward.

Rarely do you find an organization where a large majority of their employees feel valued and appreciated. By raising the accountability in using your recognition programs, you’ll have metrics that show how important recognition really is. 

Correlation of recognition to results. Draw upon the accessible recognition data output reports and compare their results with key performance indicators. Find out who is using the recognition programs properly and compare their performance with those who are not. You’ll see how your recognition programs are driving performance results.

Raise the ante by holding leaders and managers accountable for recognition giving. Make recognition a part of their performance management review. 

Likelihood To Stay. You can find out your employees’ intentions to stay with your organization through pulse-check surveys or other click-on-response buttons. Tools like this raise the importance of recognition by showing how it drives retention. You can even go one step further and ask about their likelihood to recommend the company to family and friends.

The more you can pair recognition output measures with some other indicator then you will prove how valuable recognition programs are. 

Quick Ways To Raise the Importance of Recognition Programs 

  1. Increase recognition awareness. The more you increase the awareness of recognition programs and how effective they are will prove their importance.
  2. Make recognition matter. Work on a solid communication plan to set the expectations for recognizing people with your programs.
  3. Pay attention to recognition. The more you attend to people recognizing others and congratulate them for doing so, the more attention recognition gets.
  4. Gain leader influence. Enlist the help of your senior leaders to be the positive examples you want them to be in using your recognition programs.
  5. At the heart. Have recognition become a common practice in all areas of work so that recognition giving is a way of life. 

Recognition Reflection: Does everyone at work know that employee recognition is important to you?

Roy is no longer writing new content for this site (he has retired!), but you can subscribe to Engage2Excel’s blog as Engage2Excel will be taking Roy’s place writing about similar topics on employee recognition and retention, leadership and strategy.

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