Staff recognition builds morale and increases retention. Research shows it doesn’t have to take a big investment of time, effort or money to recognize team member contributions in a meaningful way. One of the most impactful, low-cost or no-cost strategies is meaningful, personal recognition. The results could have a significant impact on your organization.
Everyone likes to be appreciated for the work they do; to know they are valued. When team members and their work are valued, their job satisfaction, work performance, motivation and commitment increase. Encourage peer recognition as well and provide ways for coworkers to acknowledge each other’s contributions.
In her book, The Power of Service: Keeping Customers for Life, Petra Marquart states that one of the most motivating forces for workers is to be recognized for their contributions. She recommends that reward and recognition programs meet three objectives:
- Be timely - It is important for managers to be present with staff. If a manager is out of the office or behind a closed door all day, they are not available to witness or hear about great work in a timely fashion, therefore the staff member cannot be recognized in a timely fashion. Timeliness relates to the meaning behind the recognition.
- Be sincere - People are experts in detecting insincerity! To be effective, recognition and praise need to be genuine.
- Be specific - Recognition that is specific to a person lets the staff member know they are valued as an individual. Although a generic “great job” has its place, specific praise will make a staff member feel special as an individual contributor.
Having a recognition program offers benefits to your organization in many ways:
- Increased productivity
- Strong teamwork
- Increased morale
- Increased commitment and loyalty to the organization
- Increased retention