Why do people work? Do people work only to earn money, pay bills, and live in some comfort? Or might they also work for a more inherent reason?
We all need money to live in comfort and to support our families. However, I believe that most human beings thrive in environments that provide recognition for their accomplishments. While you can assist your roommates or family members at home, whether or not they will notice and appreciate your efforts is often a crapshoot.
On the other hand, I believe that a place in which we can be recognized consistently is at work. When we are at work, we are measured for our contributions toward revenue growth, or for our efforts that increase net profits. Revenue growth and net profits can be measured, and their increases are easy to appreciate because increases in these areas impress investors.
It is important that all individual employees be given a set of metrics or Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) that they can be measured on. If everyone is held accountable for their jobs and measured accordingly, they have a framework by which they can be recognized.
Once you have created the metrics and KPIs, you have the framework to build a consistent recognition process for every contributing member of the company which can be implemented across the organization. As I mentioned earlier, I believe that people thrive on recognition. To help your employees thrive, your company should consider building a continuous recognition program.
A continuous recognition program may recognize those individuals who consistently meet their objectives. This is an easy place to start. To get your entire organization to flourish, however, your company might consider recognizing employees who have made incremental improvements. You may want to recognize people who contribute to the greater community, for example. The continuous recognition program can be run as often as you’d like — monthly, quarterly, semi-annually, etc.
Give Managers the opportunity to do “spot” recognition, on the fly and in front of their teams. This type of recognition will prevent complacency. Imagine how you might feel if, out-of-the-blue, your manager recognized you and gave you the rest of the day off because of your contribution to the company.
The method of recognition can take many forms. As a company, decide if you will give days off, gift cards, cash, etc. However, don’t let these be the only forms used for recognizing your team members. A nice letter, on company letterhead, or a note of thanks can go a long way in motivating your team and building a “thriving” organizational culture.
Once you design a continuous recognition program and implement it, you will watch your team members and organization prosper