Good employees thrive at work when they know their contributions have meaning. Letting your employees know the ways in which their work matters to you, the company or even to their fellow colleagues, helps keep your employees engaged and excited about their work.
Meaningful recognition of employees is important, but still something companies struggle to define and do effectively. Here are a few ideas to better include authentic recognition within your employee experience.
A Simple Step Beyond "Thank You"
People are motivated by more than money. Research shows us how non-monetary rewards go a long way
. Social scientist, Dan Ariely explains this idea in the video below regarding research he conducted around social rewards.
When saying “thank you” to your team members, take additional time to customize the communication, celebration and reward to their specific accomplishments—as well as their personality. Plus, personalization that reflects your company’s brand values can strengthen the connection back to the organization.
Outside-the-Box Experiential Rewards
From peer-to-peer rewards to gamification and front-row parking spots, the reward space is evolving with the speed of an Internet meme.
So find something for everyone—whether it’s flying trapeze classes or farm-to-table cooking lessons. Unique rewards like parkour lessons, walking the red carpet or other FOMO-worthy, hand-curated experiences like becoming spy for a day
that employees might not otherwise seek out on their own ensures you’ll leave a lasting impression. No matter what your employee’s interests are, this type of custom reward is guaranteed to be impactful. Beyond the experience itself, anticipation before and memories after go a long way to extending that engagement’s impact.
Tried & True Rewards of Gratitude
Variety is great when it comes to employee rewards. It’s always a good idea to explore new reward options, but don’t assume last year’s offerings are all worth tossing out. Many rewards like luggage, golf equipment and electronics work well year after year. And don’t forget the simple act of showing appreciation. Gratitude may seem obvious, but it’s still a core part of recognition.
“We treat recognition as if it’s more expensive than gold… It’s cheap and easy to do, yet we treat recognition like a scarce commodity,” Dan Ariely points out in the video above. But the reality is that feeling connected to what we’ve created and feeling that people appreciate us is central to motivation and it’s so easy to do—so let’s do more of it.
Authentic & Meaningful Recognition Matters Most
No matter how your company decides to approach employee appreciation and recognition, make sure it’s authentic and aligned with your organization, values and culture. The investment, be it large or small, can make all the difference to your staff, those you serve and the potential you can reach as a team. Treat your people like people and reward them when appropriate.