Why Managers Don’t Recognize Their Employees, And Why They Absolutely Should!

According to the latest statistics, fully 80% of US companies now have an employee recognition program of one sort or another.  That naturally leads to an interesting question though:  What about the other 20%?  Why haven’t they embraced the idea?

The answers vary, but broadly speaking, the reasons managers give for not creating one fall into one of the following groups:

  • It’s too time-intensive/I don’t have the time
  • I already pay my employees and that should be sufficient
  • I don’t want to coddle/spoil my employees
  • And I don’t want to be seen as playing favorites

On the surface, those may even seem like good, valid reasons for not taking the plunge and setting up a recognition program.  On closer inspection, however, managers who adopt this mindset are only hurting themselves and their companies.

Let’s first take a quick look at the benefits a well-run recognition program has to offer.  These include:

  • Higher loyalty/customer satisfaction scores from customers
  • Increased retention of your best employees
  • Less employee stress
  • Less employee absenteeism
  • Decreased employee turnover rate
  • Greater employee satisfaction
  • And improved productivity and employee engagement

It’s hard to argue against that basket of positives.

As to addressing the most common excuses managers offer when talking about why they can’t or won’t establish a recognition program, it comes down to this:  Ask yourself if any of your reasons, or even all of your reasons taken together are providing you more value than the benefits just listed above?

If they’re not, then you’re only fooling yourself, and if you’re worried about the time involved, or being seen as playing favorites, there’s an easy fix for that too:  Establish a steering committee made up of your employees.  They’ll drive the process using parameters set by you.  That distances you from the equation, saving you time and removing any consideration of playing favorites.

The bottom line is simply this:  Employee Recognition programs offer tons of value to your firm and cost very little in terms of time and money.  They’re a spectacular investment in the future of your firm, no matter what business you’re in!