Recognition in the Workplace

The age old saying of catching more flies with honey than vinegar has no better use than in the workplace. When it comes to setting the conditions for an employee to do their job (and do it well), an employee recognition programs can quickly and economically dispense the so-called productivity honey your company may desperately need.

Recognition at the Workplace

While many employers assume that all their employees are after is more cold, hard cash, studies actually find that cash is not the biggest driver to employee satisfaction. Instead, a general sense of happiness has the greatest impact on superstar employees.

If your company doesn’t have Google-sized budgets for employee perks, it doesn’t mean that you can’t have some kind of recognition in the workplace.  Consider celebrating smaller accomplishments with task or performance-based rewards. Gift cards, rewards and certificates don’t have to be expensive endeavours, and they can also go a long way in providing positive feedback to teams and departments. By keeping track of productivity and achievements, managers can also keep a close pulse-check on company morale and monitor workplace performance. A digital tool like an online company store can efficiently dispense your employee rewards program at the click of a button (and within your pre-set parameters).

Recognition with Work-Life Balance

Perhaps you’ve read news coverage about the Google Bus, SC Johnson’s concierge service, or AOL’s on-site daycare. Perks and benefits can make a significant contribution to workplace performance by helping employees better juggle the work-life balance. If budgets or disparate locations don’t permit scaling through your whole organization, consider offering rewards that help employees take better care of themselves and their families (such as dry cleaning pick-ups, massage therapy visits, or passes for a fun family outing). Again, these rewards don’t have to be flashy or extravagant to be meaningful. Facilitating a better health experience for employees results in less sick time and absenteeism (and the resulting costs of turnover). So making the effort to choose feel-good rewards to say thank you can go a long way to protecting your bottom line.


A team that collaborates together fosters more loyalty and commitment to your company. An employee rewards program can provide the validation that lets an employee know that their work is valued and appreciated, not just as part of a team but as an individual member to a team. While team-based rewards can boost morale, they can also boost motivation and a sense of ownership in the workplace when the contributions of individual team members are acknowledged.

Recognition expert Bob Nelson has these guidelines to help you strike while the iron is hot and make the employee recognition gesture more impactful:

  • As Soon – Timing is important; don’t delay praise
  • As Sincere – Do it because you’re truly appreciative
  • As Specific – Give details of the achievement
  • As Personal – Do it in person (or a handwritten note)
  • As Positive – Don’t mix in criticism
  • As Proactive – Don’t wait for perfect performance

Read Bob Nelson’s ASAP Cubed Guide  to learn more.

AboutGlenda McCarthy-Gaspar

Glenda McCarthy-Gaspar, 15+ years sales and marketing experience. After serving in various sales and marketing roles for some of Canada’s largest corporations, Glenda followed her entrepreneurial dream and started her own business in 2008. By 2011, Glenda earned her BASI (Bachelor of Advertising Specialty Information) designation. Also in 2011 she made the decision to join Proforma, the largest print, promotional and graphic communications company in North America in hopes of taking business growth to a new level. That decision paid off and has resulted in her winning numerous business awards for excellence and has achieved million dollar sales by 2014. Glenda has recently obtained her Inbound Marketing Certification to help her clients meet the demands of the digital world.

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