Top 11 Reasons to Recognize Employees

Date: April 5, 2023
employee retention solution

The desire to be appreciated goes back to when people had to prove their value to the tribe. Otherwise, they wouldn't survive. Today, survival requirements are different, but the needs for recognition are still the same.  

At work, recognition is a strong driving force. It motivates, encourages, and engages employees. 

As a result, they become more productive, engaged, and loyal to the company. This, in turn, increases revenue, improves reputation, stimulates business growth, and reduces employee turnover.

Let's take a closer look at the top reasons to recognize your employees and effective ways to do it.

Key Reasons to Recognize Employees

While an occasional "good job" is an easy way to improve employee morale, a lack of a constructive approach to recognition could be counterproductive. You need to consider establishing a recognition program that defines reasons to show employee appreciation.

1. Going Above and Beyond

When an employee accepts a job offer, they have a list of responsibilities. Fulfilling them dutifully may not always require special appreciation. Salary, benefits, team-building events, and other general perks can be sufficient.

However, when a person exceeds expectations and goes above and beyond their standard work, it's a reason for appreciation. Some examples are:

  • Landing a major client
  • Exceeding weekly sales goals
  • Finishing a project early
  • Recruiting highly demanded talent

These employee accomplishments warrant special attention. When creating an employee recognition program, you can establish specific criteria for getting rewards. You can also list the types of rewards you plan to implement to recognize employees who go above and beyond.

For the reward to achieve maximum results, you would have to:

  • Research what each employee appreciates the most (one would appreciate baseball tickets, another would instead go to the opera)
  • Make recognition public (public recognition motivates other team members)

Some employees prefer private recognition over public appreciation, since they don't like being in the spotlight. For these people, it's possible to consider private recognition options.

2. Providing Assistance to a Coworker

reasons to recognize employees

Companies that promote teamwork and collaboration can reduce employee turnover by an impressive 50%. While team-building events and carefully chosen team members go a long way, it's imperative to encourage assistance and collaboration.

If one employee provides valuable assistance to another team member, it's a reason to reward them. In fact, team recognition is an integral part of your employee appreciation effort. It strengthens the team, motivates employees, and improves collaboration.

Some effective ways to recognize an employee for assisting a coworker include:

  • A public thank you during a weekly win meeting
  • Company swag (mugs, sweatshirts, pens)
  • Lunch for the entire team
  • Sharing a "thank you" post on social media

Recognizing an employee's desire to help another coworker encourages teamwork, strengthens company values, and improves employee retention.

3. Mentoring a New Employee

Low-quality on-boarding is a major cause of employee turnover. Meanwhile, 69% of employees who enjoy an excellent on-boarding experience will likely remain at their jobs for at least three years.

If your team member mentors new employees, they contribute to your company's success and cut high churn costs. Meanwhile, they are nurturing a positive work environment and strengthening your team.

Mentoring a new employee is a complex task that requires extra time and effort. Showing public appreciation for this effort can support the employee and motivate others to do the same.

4. Filling In for a Coworker

reasons to recognize employees

Filling in for a coworker is usually optional. Employees who agree to do it go above and beyond their standard responsibilities. In most cases, employers pay extra for such an effort, especially if it's a long-term arrangement.

While monetary rewards are helpful, they are less effective than other ways of recognizing employees. Studies show that non-financial incentives drive 55% of employee engagement. Employees appreciate the attention to their needs and efforts more than they want money.

That's one of the reasons why you should consider working out a recognition system that covers non-financial rewards for employees ready to fill in.

5. Saving Company Money

While many employers focus on employee achievements related to increasing revenue, employees who save the company money also deserve rewards.

If an employee caught a serious error on time, prevented a cybersecurity breach, or provided valuable information for timely decision-making, you need to recognize this effort.

Proactive work and preventative measures are key to cutting costs and maintaining a stellar reputation. High-quality recognition is a significant incentive to retain employees who contribute to your company's success.

In many cases, actions that save money are subtle. It's up to the employer to track them closely and provide relevant rewards. Employees who do this are just as important as workers who maximize your company's revenue.

6. Providing Ideas to Improve Workflow

reasons to recognize employees

Employees who can generate effective ideas are as good as gold. They deserve a special type of appreciation and recognition. High-quality recognition can encourage other team members to brainstorm and contribute to your company's growth and development.

When building an employee recognition program, transparency is one of its most important elements. Employees should know exactly what they can expect to be rewarded for. This doesn't just motivate teams to work harder but also prevents management from unconscious bias.

7. Receiving Praise From a Client

When a customer or client recognizes your employee, you should follow suit. Receiving positive feedback from a client can be highly useful for word-of-mouth marketing, loyalty, and customer lifetime value (LTV).

Praise your company receives from customers drives conversions, increases customer retention, and positively affects the company's reputation.

Employees who receive this praise must have gone above and beyond to provide exceptional service. This warrants recognition effort from the employer as well.

While customer praise is motivational, it's not sufficient for the employee. They need to see that the company sees and understands the effort that went into getting this praise.

8. Being Innovative

reasons to recognize employees

Innovation drives business development. A recent survey showed that 43% of executives cite innovation as a competitive necessity for their companies. Employees that introduce innovation deserve recognition.

If employees introduce consistently clever ideas, their value to the company is high. That's why it's imperative to hold on to this talent. Recognition is one of the ways to retain innovation-driving employees.

Meanwhile, public appreciation encourages the rest of your team to hone innovative thinking and introduce new ideas to the management.

9. Hard Work

Hard work is the pillar of business success. Not all employees have the skills or opportunities to introduce innovation, receive client praise, or mentor new employees. They contribute to the company's growth and development by working extra hard.

Management often overlooks these employees since they don't do anything extraordinary. In reality, their consistent hard work can be the foundation of business operations. It's up to the employer to work out a program that focuses on rewarding employees whose work is seemingly "invisible."

10. Personal Growth

reasons to recognize employees

Many employees work on their personal growth and development outside the company. Some of them take courses related to their hobbies. Others are honing their skills or participating in volunteering activities.

While these actions don't directly impact the company's success, they indirectly improve the employee's soft skills. Rewarding employees for personal growth efforts allow them to see how an employer cares for their comfort, well-being, and success.

11. Company Values

Supporting company values isn't an easy task for all of your workforce. Employees who make a special effort to live according to company values contribute to the company culture and a positive workplace environment.

Recognizing an employee's desire to embody these values can be an excellent way to support and reinforce them. This builds a strong brand, improves reputation, and streamlines retention.

Building a Strong Employee Recognition Program

A Gallup-Workhuman study showed that a strong recognition program can save organizations over $16M annually. The key to a robust appreciation effort is creating a consistent recognition system. Knowing when and how to reward your employees can help encourage loyalty and decrease churn.

While some reasons to recognize employees may seem obvious (landing a top-notch client, exceeding sales goals), others require in-depth research and a creative approach. With the right tools, it's possible to build an effective system that ensures recognition consistency and efficiency.

Bucketlist Rewards' Employee Rewards & Retention Solution can help you build a robust employee recognition program that covers your workforce's needs while automating reward elements, simplifying peer-to-peer recognition, and much more.

To find out how Employee Rewards & Retention Software can improve your employee recognition efforts, book a free demo today.

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