Why Recognition is More Critical Now Than Ever

Chester Elton

The holiday season is among us - a time when gift giving, camaraderie and festivity can warm the hearts of our teams. And, even though many organizations are accustomed to showing appreciation this time of year, we have a few final thoughts to keep in mind - especially as our global economy faces recession.

1. A Gift is a Gift
Holiday gifts are a great way to recognize people for their hard work all year long, but they should not be mistaken with performance awards of bonuses. The true message of a corporate holiday gift is that everyone in the organization is critical to the collective success, which is why we give everyone the same gift of the same selection of gifts. Performance bonuses and above-and-beyond awards are where we differentiate employees based on performance.

2. Snap Away
A great way to send off the old year and welcome the new is to create a wall of memories to remind us all how fun it can be around here. Post photos from recognition events like company picnics and award banquets. Post pictures of memorable events like weddings and community involvement. People love to be recognized in photos.

3. Pencil the Dates In
A new year means it's time for a new recognition calendar. Transfer all important recognition dates onto your new calendar before the end of the year - birthdays, service anniversaries and company milestones. The last thing you want to do it wait until the new year begins and overlook special events that take place in January or February that will keep momentum going.

Overall, remember that the holidays are the perfect time to show appreciation. Of course, this season (particularly this year) can also be a time of additional stress for employees, so keep them focused by recognizing their great work. Gifts are great, performance awards and bonuses are phenomenal, but let's also not forget to simply say "thank you" often.

Chestor Elton, co-author of The Carrot Principle.
Adrian Gostick, co-author of The Carrot Pricinciple.
Copyright 2008. All Rights Reserved.

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