Employee productivity contributes significantly to a business’ success. Employees that approach the workday with enthusiasm often best help a company meet its daily requirements. Enthusiasm and productivity both rely on good employee morale. Conversely, when morale falters in a work environment, employees cease to contribute to their maximum abilities. An attitude might devolve into “Why bother? I’m not being recognized for my work.” Yes, recognition — and lack of recognition — impact morale significantly.
Why does recognition play such an important role in employee morale? Simply put, it makes people feel valued. Feeling valued makes someone feel good about him/herself.
Being Noticed and Being Productive
People do want to be noticed and singled out in a positive manner. They want to feel their contributions have meaning. Collecting a weekly salary certainly is important, but money alone won’t hit the positive psychological and emotional cords necessary to feel purposeful in life. Money certainly can act as a motivator, but the motivation has its limits.
Employers and middle managers would be shortsighted to scoff at these notions. Successful business professionals know they must appeal to more than the financial needs of an employee. Doing so increases the chances of the employee performed at his/her highest potential.
There’s a reason why fast food franchises established the ritual of hanging up “Employee of the Month” placards on walls by the counter. Employees who see management appreciates their contributions usually commit themselves to working harder.
Ways of Recognizing an Employee’s Value
Not every means of recognizing an employee’s work ethic involves public displays such as “Employee of the Month” placards. Presenting the employee with a “certificate of achievement” in a private manner can help. So would a simple thank you now and then.
Of course, outright rewards work well as means of showing appreciation should be utilized. A time-off award, a gift certificate for a meal at a nice restaurant, or a cash bonus won’t go unnoticed by employees.
Recognition Related to the Ladder of Success
A promotion definitely tells an employee his/her contributions haven’t been ignored. No employer moves an employee up the promotional ladder and provides a commensurate raise without also delivering recognition of talent and skill. Consistently holding good employees in the same position and duties isn’t beneficial. Good workers do expect a promotion or even some sort of lateral transfer at some point. Wise managers know when to deliver on such expectations.