Addressing company culture when you don’t exactly know why you should be doing it can seem a lot like buying a new dress for an event when you know that you won’t be running into any of the guests that saw you in your trusty LBD at the previous shindig. After all, if it ain’t broken, why fix it, right?
If things seem to be ticking over just fine at your place of business (morale is pretty good, watercooler gossip seems under control, no one has cried at their desk in over a month), it can be tempting to be lulled into a state of ‘yeah it’s okay’-ness.
Here’s the thing - yeah it’s okay is not the kind of company culture that supercharges business growth. The trusty little black dress if fine and all, but it’s never going to earn you the title of belle of the ball - you need something a little more lively, a little more inspired, to elevate you to that position.
Which is where employee engagement at the hand of recognition and reward comes in.
By now we know that companies with a highly engaged workforce are 21% more profitable, and that only 9% of the South African workforce is actively engaged.
Of the 91% who were disengaged, 45% were actively disengaged (i.e. very negative about their job environment and likely to spread the negativity to co-workers).
This is bad.
In fact, it’s so very bad that it’s estimated that actively disengaged employees could be losing the South African economy as much as R700 billion in lost revenue per year.
But enough with the scary statistics. We’re here to tell you that the simplest way to boost employee engagement in your work environment is to take a good hard look at your company culture, and that it all starts with a focussed employee recognition and reward system.
Let’s take a look at how recognition will transform your company culture, and provide you with a few insider tips to get the ball rolling, shall we?
Here are a few very important ways in which regular recognition and reward will lead to a great company culture:
- Individual productivity will improve a lot.
- Employee satisfaction will increase overall.
- Client satisfaction will increase as a result of better team cohesion.
- You star players will stick around and the dreaded churn will abate.
- Your employees will be less stressed and less likely to be absent.
Here are a few top tips to help you tailor an employee reward and recognition program that suits your business objectives:
1. Be specific and relevant
Always be specific and relevant when you dish out praise. Recognition is much more meaningful when it's associated with a specific accomplishment, rather than a general 'good job!'. Specific feedback also allow employees to connect the recognition with a particular set of behaviours, that they are then more likely to repeat later on.
2. Don't let the moment pass you by
Strike while the iron is hot. When someone does something well, make the time to congratulate them immediately. If you practice regular recognition as a part of your company culture, it will lead to little pockets of joy throughout the workday, which will boost morale and inspire the rest of your workforce to earn their own little celebration.
3. Think outside of the box when it comes to rewards
Rewards don’t always have to be gift cards. In fact, the more personal the reward, the more effective it will be. While some of your employees will love a nice manicure or a fancy lunch, others may prefer to get a parking spot closer to the office, or some time off. Create a variety of incentives and allow your employees to choose the rewards that tick all their must-have boxes.
4. Celebrate the small successes as well
Not every recognition event needs to be tied to a major accomplishment or super swanky reward. Get in the habit of saying thank you - write notes, send off a quick email or use the company intranet to show your appreciation when someone in your team does a good job. These little gestures go a long way to creating a warm and welcoming company culture.
5. Always connect the dots
Tie your recognition endeavours to your company's vision and mission in order to cement your employees' place in the business. When your workforce understands that their behaviour directly impacts on the bigger picture, it serves as an added incentive to perform to the best of their abilities.
So, in short, a positive culture that hinges on frequent employee recognition and reward will benefit your company due to increased individual productivity and employee satisfaction, as well as improved client satisfaction and better employee retention. Less stress at work and improved attendance are other happy side effects.
If you want to ensure that your company culture receives an optimal boost from your recognition endeavours, you should:
- Offer specific, relevant recognition and rewards.
- Be timeous!
- Provide a variety of incentives.
- Not forget the small wins.
- Always link the recognition to your overall company vision and mission.
Following these guidelines will ensure that your corporate culture benefits your team members and boosts company performance by increasing your bottom line in the long run.
Are you looking to build a recognition program that's out of this world? Look no further than our most recent eBook "10 Steps to building a successful employee recognition program". Simply click the button below to get your copy now 👇