10 effective ways to recognize great work… without money

10 effective ways to recognize great work... without money

Recognizing the work of your employees should be a standard practice in all organizations, especially if the main objective is to attract and retain talent within this highly competitive market.

We all like to feel valued and appreciated. In the business world, recognizing a job well done not only serves to flatter those who have strived to achieve the best results, but it is also acts as a very effective way to maintain high levels of motivation, performance and productivity.

Employees don’t feel recognized

However, according to a study carried out by Infojobs in 2019, 69% of Spanish employees say that their work is not really recognized.

In the same way, a Gallup study found that in the United States, only a third of the employees surveyed feel recognized for their roles. In addition, 57% of employees who feel ignored by their bosses do not commit to their work.

A report by TJinsite, one of India’s leading job portals, revealed that more than 35% of employees consider lack of recognition as the biggest obstacle in improving productivity.

Given this information, we have a long way to go. Companies need to implement recognition programs that operate and maintain their workforce on point.

And although many CEOs believe that we need to invest money to achieve effective recognition, the truth is that according to several studies, such as one from Psychology Today, 83% of employees prefer to be recognized for a job well done in an honest way, instead of getting a financial reward.

Some experts like Rodrigo Ianiszewski, argue that cash payments are not accompanied by a formal recognition by the leaders of the organization. “The argument is that the person should be satisfied with that money, without having to admit and explain to people why we reward them“.

Benefits of recognizing employee work

Before we dive into deeper waters, we must define what we understand when we talk about being recognized within a company.

An honest and genuine praise of a good work of our colleagues and collaborators can bring to the company very attractive benefits. Among the most important, we find:

  1. Increased productivity. A valued employee will be more satisfied with their job and with their organization, helping to increase productivity levels by up to 31% more.
  2. Improve collaboration and teamwork. Thanking an entire department for a job well done is a great way of communicating that the result obtained with everyone’s help is much better than that obtained individually, thereby improving peer relationships and encouraging team work.
  3. Increase the feeling of belonging. By recognizing employees, we make them aware that their efforts in the tasks they perform are important when it comes to achieving the organization’s objectives, improving their commitment.
  4. Improves well-being. By creating a favorable work environment, stress levels that negatively impact the health of employees are reduced.
  5. Reinforce positive behaviors. It strengthens the skills, behaviors and attitudes which are desirable by the organization, and it also increases the chances of their recurrence in the future.

How to recognize great work from employees, without money

As we have already discussed, cash prizes are usually neither the best nor the most effective way of recognition.

You can value the hard work of employees without investing money and in a very effective way. Of course, when you are going to do it, you have to be totally honest and transparent. A recognition process will not have the same effects if it is done in an authentic way, as for the simple fact of “looking good”.

When we do an act of this magnitude, the employee or the team must really feel valued, so we must pay attention to what we do and how we do it so that our action makes sense.

So, it is important to remember that when we are going to make an assessment or recognition of a great work, we must comply with the following factors: it must be timely, specific, visible, inclusive and objective.

When choosing a recognition plan, factors such as the number of employees, the philosophy and values of the organization or how it is structured must also be taken into consideration.

In any case, each company is different and you always have to choose the action that best suits the organization and its employees.

With that said, we’re going to look at 10 effective ways to recognize great work … without money.

10 effective ways to recognize employees, without investing money in it

Through social networks

Currently, all or almost all organizations are present on the Internet through one or more Social Networks.

Whether through LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram or YouTube, these platforms are a powerful scenario to thank and value the work of employees and make the world notice it.

An appreciation tweet, a text, a photo, or even an interview focused on the person we want to thank are great ways to recognize employees and make them feel important.

A good example is Código Nuevo, a media outlet dedicated to millennial people, which leverages their stories of Instagram to publicize its employees.

Top 3

You can make a Top 3 list of many things: employees of the month, best projects, best partner, best leader… everything will depend on the objectives that the organization wants to achieve.

The rankings in public spaces, which are visible to all employees are an excellent tool to visualize the work of others, and to keep them motivated.

Public thank you emails

Another effective and cost-free way to recognize good work is by making the entire company aware of who is behind the best projects, or the decision that has saved the organization from an unprecedented crisis.

To do this, nothing better than sending a public e-mail to all employees thanking the corresponding person or group of people, showing the importance of their work.

Recognize projects in newsletters

Similar to the method mentioned above, recognizing through newsletters that are launched periodically could be an interesting as a way of transparency and keeping the staff informed of the company’s situation.

These newsletters usually incorporate news, changes, strategies and other relevant information related to the organization. An ideal space to recognize the efforts of a job well done by the talent that is part of the company.

Use the corporate website

Corporate websites are also the perfect platform to highlight the achievements of an individual employee or a spectacular team.

You can create a space dedicated to employees and their functions, post news on the networks about the best jobs and projects, let collaborators write articles on the blog and give them a voice, post videos showing the day-to-day life of the employees, interview them on a podcast, etc.

Unexpected gifts

Many companies, especially large ones or those that are dedicated to marketing, usually receive press kits containing goodies and various gifts, discount tickets, promotions, trips, coupons, etc.

Why not use these kits to recognize a job well done by an employee or a team?

“Presidential Call”

28% of respondents in a survey conducted by Gallup said that the most memorable recognition came from direct managers.

While the feedback of the leaders with whom we interact every day are very important, it is also true that a call of the CEO of the company can be very flattering and, above all, surprising.

Attendance at important meetings

Inviting outstanding employees to important meetings, such as those of the steering committee, is another way to show appreciation for their skills and abilities, as well as a good way to express confidence.

Kudo Cards

Kudo Cards are simple cards that play the role of a physical token of appreciation.

The method is as simple as writing some nice words on paper, with sincerity, praising the achievements and efforts of a person or team, and sticking them on the wall in a visible space for everyone.

Another option is to deposit them in a box and, from time to time, open it and read them all aloud.

The advantage of this format is that the valuations are made both vertically and horizontally, regardless of the hierarchy.

Simply thanks

The simplest, fastest and easiest way, but no less effective, is to say thank you personally.

Publicly or privately, through a note, a call or a One to One meeting, we congratulate the person or team for the achievements obtained thanking the efforts made to achieve the established objectives.

So these are some effective ways to recognize great work without spending money on incentives or prize money, helping make your workforce feel valued and respected, and fostering a competitive but healthy workspace.

Do you know any other method? Leave it in the comments!

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