How to create an employee recognition program

How to create an employee recognition program

Employees are the backbone of every business. Without a team of dedicated staffers, owners wouldn't have anyone besides themselves to ensure that daily operations are handled properly and running smoothly.

Continued success and hard work should be rewarded. Recognition programs can motivate employees and, as recent findings have pointed out, lead to better business. Bersin & Associates, a human resources firm, found that companies with established recognition plans are, on average, "12 times more likely to generate strong business results than their peers."

Owners and managers must establish clear criteria and rewards for their programs. Personalized business gifts can make excellent prizes, but associates should be told how they can earn those awards.

Set attainable goals
Employees want to know what actions are rewarded by their company. Staffers usually put forth their best efforts, so setting abstract goals like hard work over periods of time can be confusing. Some associates will wonder why their efforts weren't recognized while their co-workers' were.

You can set goals based on your business. For example, if you own a car dealership, you can give gifts to the sales representative with the highest monthly sales totals. Having a clear goal gives your employees something to work toward.

Have a schedule
The best recognition programs adhere to schedules so employees know when they'll be rewarded if they reach certain goals. Clear timetables motivate associates because they know they're working on deadlines and there isn't a moment to waste.

Your program may not succeed if staffers don't know when they're being monitored or when new reward periods begin. Some of your staffers may grow unhappy if they're not alerted to key dates for recognition programs.

Pick appropriate gifts
Because you're rewarding workers for their business successes, the prizes you hand out should be professional. Gifts that are functional around the workplace may be appreciated more than frivolous awards.

A personal touch can go long way toward satisfying workers. Personalized calendars and other office items, like pens, are small tokens, but show that managers are truly paying attention to who is putting forth a strong effort.

Every recognition period you can distribute a different gift so employees stay motivated to earn new prizes. Owners who want to make their rewards truly special can allow winners to pick their own rewards, whether it's a custom coffee mug, personalized portfolio or any other item that can be used around the workplace.

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