What Is Employee Recognition? - Ideas & Examples

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  • 0:03 Employee Recognition
  • 0:58 Why Recognize Employees?
  • 1:54 Recognition Without…
  • 2:53 Digging Deeper
  • 4:01 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Colette Rominger

Colette has taught many business and management courses and has a Masters in Adult Education and Training as well as an MBA

This lesson examines employee recognition and what it means to recognize employees. We'll discuss non-monetary ways to motivate staff without breaking the bank and how even small gestures can increase the overall effectiveness of a manager.

Employee Recognition

Many managers get so bogged down with daily tasks that they often forget about the people that actually complete most of work that moves the company towards meeting its goals. As managers, we have so many things on our plates each day that it's very easy to forget some of them. Recognizing our employees for a job well done is one of those things that it would be in our best interest to make every attempt to remember. Employee recognition is simple. Recognize when your employees perform at or above the desired level, and reward them for doing so.

During this lesson we'll follow Earl E. Riser. Earl has been an employee with the company for ten years. He has been through many changes in policies, processes, and management. Earl is always the first one to arrive in the morning and the last one to leave at night. Earl's department recently hired a new manager, and he immediately assigned a big project to the team.

Why Recognize Employees?

As managers we must wear many different hats in the workplace. We are often pulled in many directions at once. Imagine an octopus spinning eight plates on sticks without dropping any of them. That's sometimes how we feel. We must not forget, though, that our number one priority is to encourage, inspire, and motivate our employees no matter how many other things need our attention. Employees that feel management appreciates their efforts are employees that'll be consistently dependable, loyal, hardworking, and productive. Recognizing and rewarding our employees is a small gesture that'll go a long way in employee satisfaction and retention, and help the company achieve its strategic goals.

As a senior employee in his department, Earl E. Riser was nominated to be the leader of the new project. He was nominated by his peers and was thanked by the manager for taking on the responsibility. He immediately begins delegating tasks and brainstorming with his team members.

Recognition Without Breaking the Bank

Some of the most impactful types of recognition are often the most simple. Simply saying 'thank you' goes a long way in making employees feel included and appreciated. You can do this verbally, in an email or memo, in a company newsletter, or even on a Post-it note. It doesn't always have to be a grand gesture or a huge production. Many companies have come up with other ways to recognize employees such as 'Employee of the Month' programs with a designated employee parking space, special events such as pizza parties for teams that achieve sales goals, special recognition on the company social media sites, giving out gold stars or certificates for perfect attendance, or handing out company logo items. As you can see, there are many small, free or very low cost options for showing employee appreciation.

Every Friday, Earl meets with his manager to discuss the progress of the project. The manager tells Earl that he's doing a great job and that he's planning a potluck lunch for the staff once the project is finished.

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