‘Recognition and reward’ means different things to different companies. The definition varies according to Managers I have spoken with too.
Recognition can come in many forms, from a ‘pat on the back’ to a well earned bonus, or time off. If done well, there should be a good feel factor all round.
I often ask this question of delegates sitting in one of my management workshops:
‘Stand up if you think your manager over praises you, to the extent you just can’t take any more praise from them!’
Naturally, no-one stands up! The point is obvious, no-one is really going to accuse their line manager of over-doing praise. More likely they will accuse Managers of over-doing criticism, not the other way round!
We all like to be told when we have done a really good job and it is a powerful motivator. What this means is the more that people feel satisfied and motivated the more likely they are to stay working for your business.
Not everyone is the same, some like praise openly in front of others and another person may cringe with embarrassment, so it is all about what is the right approach to motivate that individual.
Rewards – it’s all about the money isn’t it?
This is an interesting one as often we think it is all about money, but people regularly tell me that a genuine ‘thank you goes a long way’ too. I remember one person telling me about receiving a handwritten thank-you note, personally signed by the MD. It meant a great deal to him and he showed it to all his family and kept the note.
Rewards – which ones work?
Managers, it is definitely worth getting to really know your team members, to understand what motivates different people and use this to help improve performance.
Remember the saying ‘different strokes, for different folks’. Not everyone is going to be highly motivated and feel rewarded by a Go-Kart event and some would purposely choose not to turn up!
Familiar rewards used may include:
- Acknowledgement of achievement against a challenging goal, project or target, particularly if the person can clearly see how it has made a contribution and difference to the business and their team.
- Praise, to recognise a job well done. This tells the individual their hard work and achievement has not gone unnoticed and is truly appreciated.
- Added responsibility can be very motivational, providing they are given the tools and coaching and support to make a success of it.
- Providing opportunities for learning and development, to help people up-skill.
To achieve the above, Managers have a key role in monitoring and communicating successes against targets and performance.
How to reward excellence on a modest budget?
There are so many ways to reward your people when they achieve something over and above. It can range from praise which doesn’t cost a bean (!) to certificates, social events, to award ceremonies. You may want to consider implementing some of the following at Company and/or Team level:
- Verbal praise by Line manager
- Letter of recognition or personal call from higher management
- Seeking and sharing positive customer feedback comments about staff members Peer recognition
- Leave early/Time off
- Special award event or tickets to events
- Some outings and social functions, outdoor activities (e.g BBQ) or meals
- Special award event
- Additional learning and development opportunities
- Food is popular – jam donuts/biscuits or hot food on emergency overtime, a thank you bar of chocolate for a job well done – these small gestures can all make a difference.
‘Rewarding’ is about showing appreciation for what’s been done really well. Remember to give recognition to your peers and superiors too and ensure they hear of team member positive examples.