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6 Pack To-Go: Recognition Rules!

Admit it.  You have done it.  You congratulate Tom on his way out the door, "Nice work, Tom" or tell your team, "great work today, folks".  What really happened here?  Did you know that studies show that the average employee spends 1 hour per day surfing the Internet for non work-related purposes?  Did you know that Tom told the shipping department to take a flying leap this morning?  Yikes.

Recognition is a very powerful tool...if used correctly.  Done well and often, recognition can accelerate the performance of individuals and teams.  Ask yourself: "over the past 7 days, have I recognized everyone on my team for a specific act that somehow helped my organization achieve our goals?"  If the answer is "no", you may have left some opportunity on the table.  This 6 pack To-Go makes it easy to see why recognition rules!

  1. What is recognized is repeated.   Said simply, recognition rewards people for desirable behavior.  Catch a person doing something fantastic and recognize them for that specific task.  Zero in on exactly what they did that was so tremendous.  People want to feel valued for their contribution.  Recognize their specific contribution and they will most likely do it more, faster, better.
  2. All roads lead to the goal.  Tie the recognition you give directly to a business result.  Let the person know how their specific action contributed to a specific business metric.  For example, if Jeff loaded a truck in 2 hours instead of the typical 2.75 hours you could say: "Jeff, thank you for that great work loading the truck for the Acme run this morning.  Because you saved almost an hour in loading time, we were able to deliver the load to Acme on time and that helped us maintain our goal of 98% on-time delivery.  Nice work!"  Always make the tie.
  3. Engage me, please.  Most leaders only spend a few precious moments with each employee every day. Use those few minutes to recognize good things that are happening so that your employees can get seriously engaged in success for the day and stay that way the other 7.95 hours of the day while you are off performing other leader duties.
  4. Velocity, velocity, velocity.  When you take the time to recognize a team member in the company of others you provide an opportunity for others to learn successful behaviors.  Others are likely to replicate rewarded behaviors.  Momentum builds when team members see that they are part of a talented team. Success begets success.
  5. It's so fun, everyone can do it!  It has been said that recognition from your team member, your peer, the person whose is by your side fighting the battles for 8 or 10 hours a day is measurably more valuable than recognition from a manager.  These are the people who truly know the real deal.  Wouldn't it be cool if everyone knew how to recognize stellar work and did it with great frequency?  Coach someone how to do it well today.
  6. Last and certainly not least: competitive advantage.  Recognition is one element of a highly engaged workforce.  Across many renowned studies we find that, at best, less than 20% of employees are highly engaged.  Read: highly engaged = emotionally and intellectually committed to an organization; brainpower, time and energy put into the success of your company.  What is stopping you from increasing the engagement of your team?  You do want to achieve your goals, don't you? 

"The achievements of an organization are the results of the combined effort of each individual."                                                                -  Vince Lombardi

Thank you for enjoying this 6 Pack To-Go.  Please THINK responsibly.