Finding, developing, and keeping a powerful team that shares your corporate values, integrity, and long-term vision is hard work that never ends.
But the satisfaction when you stand back and marvel at a great team that adds value to your business is priceless. It’s definitely the most valuable ROI in any organization.
I get a kick out of watching them proudly strut away after I boost their morale by rewarding them for a job well done.
For me, there’s a difference in recognizing outstanding performance daily as opposed to rewarding my employees for a big win in the business.
Why Are Employee Rewards and Recognition Vital?
According to a recent survey by HR Technologist, 63% of employees who receive regular recognition and rewards have no urge to job hunt in their immediate future.
40% of interviewed employees said they would put more energy and effort into their tasks if they were recognized more often.
“The human brain craves recognition; it thrives on it. When we receive recognition, it stimulates the hypothalamus (the part of our brain that controls our metabolism and stress levels) and increases dopamine production (the chemical that causes happiness) to improve the quality of our work and our productivity. In fact, 40% of employed Americans say they’d put more energy into their work if they were recognized more often.”
What Is Employee Recognition?
“The acknowledgement of the existence, validity, or legality of something.”
— Oxford Dictionary
Recognizing excellent work is a fine art.
I like to revert to the "One Minute Management" strategy with my team.
Although it’s traditionally used for performance management and correction, I prefer to use it for employee recognition.
When you see excellent performance—recognize it and praise it right there and then.
It’s a personal approach to validating an employees dedication.
What Are Employee Rewards?
“To give something to (someone) in recognition of their services, efforts, or achievements.” — Oxford Dictionary
When my team achieves a big win after continually outperforming our competitors, I love rewarding them.
In my business, recognition is daily verbal confirmation and encouragement of virtuoso performance—while rewards are tangible.
How you go about rewarding your employees also depends on the targets achieved, right?
So let’s look at four ways you can use employee rewards and recognition to boost morale and ultimately create a wonderful corporate environment to work in, while attracting the best talent.
“Well-established in psychology literature and touted by management experts
for decades, the principles of recognition, rewards and reinforcement
are linked to higher levels of motivation, engagement and productivity,
lower staff turnover, and the ability to attract and retain top talent,”
Happy employees → happy clients → happy boss!
4 Ways To Reward and Recognize Employees
Although many organizations don’t distinguish between these two terms, I prefer to separate the two and give recognition and rewards to individuals, or the entire team, based on merit.
Let me share four ways you can go about doing this.
A Weekly Employee Recognition Program
Employee Recognition Through Verbal Praise
I’m a big fan of employee engagement.
I love to talk to my team. It gives me insight into their physical and mental well-being, and that ultimately helps me understand each individual’s attributes better.
No two people are the same.
If you know your employees, you can develop their unique corporate strengths, and also identify when employee recognition is well-deserved, and due.
It’s more valuable to do this publicly.
You should make a habit of not only praising them one-on-one, but to make a big hoo-ha of their performance in your weekly team meetings.
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You can give weekly verbal employee recognition for:
- Individual weekly sales targets achieved
- Superb customer feedback about an employee’s service levels
- When an employee went above and beyond to help co-workers achieve their targets
It’s a great morale boost that encourages peer recognition among the entire team—and you make them feel appreciated.
Employee Rewards at Monthly Meetings
When an employee excels continuously in any given task, the rewards system should kick in.
Nothing beats the look on their face as they walk into the boardroom and find the employee of the month gift pack waiting on their seat.
Each monthly winner can receive a specially engraved pen with their name and the date on it. Having a luxury pen engraved and shipped takes one day so it’s perfect for monthly meetings.
An employee reward that’s personalized, practical, and that they can treasure for a lifetime is the best way to go.
You can also use your monthly sales and team meetings to reward employees’ superb performance with rewards that are linked to the annual awards program.
Let me explain in a bit more detail.
Instead of treating your bonuses and rewards as individual occurrences, let it all flow into one employee rewards program.
Why not use luxury pens for the reward program?
- Each pen represents one of their targets in various areas of performance.
- Each monthly target achieved gets a pen.
- Each pen represents a percentage of their annual target.
The aim is to get the entire collection by the time of the annual awards ceremony.
If an employee receives them all throughout the year, they get the ultimate surprise reward.
It’s a fun way to encourage healthy competition among your team members. You can get creative with your recognition programs—the sky’s the limit.
Corporate Prizes at Team Building Events
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We invest heavily into corporate fun days.
It’s a wonderful opportunity to destress, motivate and allow your team to let their hair down.
You can also use it to dish out some much-needed brownie points to get the entire team back on the target track.
Why not use the day to let them compete for the missing "target pens" they need to get back in the running for the annual mystery prize?
You should also use team exercises to promote a healthy culture of gifting among the team.
Here’s an idea:
Give employees pens with your company's core values engraved on it. Ask them to give it to another person in the team that radiates that value daily and sets an example to others.
People love giving gifts.
In this way you enable each person to:
- reward a fellow worker for splendid work
- encourage others to work hard
- promote peer recognition
All your employees feel good and your rewards platform becomes multi-dimensional.
There are many ways to skin a cat. Using this method achieves many positive results playfully.
Annual Awards Ceremony
When starting to organize the annual awards ceremony it sure seems easier to buy everybody a gift card, right?
But, there’s no personal touch to it and your reward ideas can be so much more creative and personalized.
A luxury engraved pen is a lifelong companion that allows the receiver to constantly see, and remember, the occasion on which they received such a special award.
"Pleased with the pens, engraving, and shipping.
We are very pleased with the pens, the engraving, and the expeditious manner in which they were shipped to us. The pens made it in time for our service award presentation. We will definitely order through your company again. Thank you.”
It’s like giving your employee some low-key bragging rights whenever they whip out the pen to take notes or sign a document.
Image from: Pexels
The ultimate surprise prize that your employees competed for the entire year can be a monetary reward, or a cruise to the Mediterranean—it’s up to you.
By implementing an interactive employee rewards program throughout the year, your team will have fun while gathering the coveted pen-sets leading up to the grand prize.
Let’s Wrap it Up: Why Pens Are the Best Employee Reward and Recognition gifts?
Besides the fact that a beautiful and stylish pen makes you feel like a writing rockstar when it glides effortlessly across clean, crisp paper—handwriting holds superb benefits in today’s fast-paced online world.
“Computers may dominate our lives, but mastery of penmanship brings us important cognitive benefits, research suggests.” — The Guardian.
Using personalized pens to reward your team isn’t only spoiling your employees with a beautiful and coveted gift.
You’re contributing to their cognitive health—in the most affordable way.
Featured image: PexelsImage