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The Importance Of Employee Recognition

Given the blistering pace of the modern work environment, employee recognition can be easy to overlook. Unfortunately, those who don’t take the time are putting their organizations at risk.

Millennials are now dominant in the workforce, and unlike previous generations, they have different needs, wants, goals and desires. Study after study has confirmed that a major component of what the Millennial-driven workforce is looking for goes beyond simple dollar signs. They want satisfaction and recognition. If you’re not giving them those things, your company stands to lose in three distinct ways. They are:

Degradation Of Your Company’s Culture

People want to work for great companies. Part of what makes a company great is a sense of family and community. Different people from different backgrounds with wildly varying skill sets all coming together to accomplish the overarching mission that your company was built around.

Absent recognition of the achievements of your star performers, no matter how vibrant your company’s culture is, you begin to work very much against it. Over time, that can have tremendous negative impacts that will be felt in your bottom line.

Higher Turnover Rates

People and especially Millennials want to be recognized for their achievements and their contributions toward larger company goals. If you’re failing to do that on a regular basis, you can expect to have higher turnover rates among your employees, relative to your peer companies. Simply put, if you don’t recognize the accomplishments of your best people, they’re apt to go to work for someone who will. Your loss will be their gain.

Lower Productivity

Did you know that 69% of employees indicated that one of the things keeping them from being more productive is the simple lack of recognition.

If your company doesn’t, and hasn’t historically recognized exemplary performance, then there’s no expectation of recognition, and in the absence of that expectation, your employees simply aren’t going to be giving you their all. Honestly, it’s hard to fault them for that attitude. No one likes to work long hours and have their efforts go unnoticed.

Fortunately, all of these problems are easier to address than you might realize. A simple recognition program is easy to establish, and far from being an expense and a drag on your bottom line, it will address the problems above and provide you handsome returns on your modest investment.

The key to a good employee recognition program isn’t the number of dollars spent on gifts for your top performers, but on truly knowing the employees working for you and understanding their wants, goals, and desires.

Once you understand those things, it’s easy to find simple, cost-effective ways of shining the spotlight on your hardworking, diligent employees and recognizing them for their achievements.

Too many managers try to overcomplicate this, or approach the topic of recognition in a ham-fisted manner that leaves employees feeling even less inspired and enthusiastic than before, so while a good recognition program isn’t hard to set up, striking the right balance and tone can be a difficult proposition, requiring both patience and practice to get right.

It is well worth the time and modest sums of money spent, however.