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Recognising and Rewarding High Performance

Recognition comes in all shapes and sizes. From a pat on the back to a well-deserved bonus, the feel good factor is great for business. Read these top tips for rewarding your staff.  

We all like to know when we’ve done a good job. In fact, giving recognition can be one of the biggest motivators. It stands to reason that keeping your people happy and satisfied also makes it more likely they will stay in their job – so it’s an area really worth focusing on. We all like to know when we’ve done a good job. In fact, giving recognition can be one of the biggest motivators. It stands to reason that keeping your people happy and satisfied also makes it more likely they will stay in their job – so it’s an area really worth focusing on. We all enjoy being praised, especially if it’s in front of other people. Presentation and delivery can be as important as the reward itself.

Rewards don’t have to be financial. A thank you goes a long way.

Why use rewards?

It’s worth spending time working out what motivates your individual team members and then using this to improve performance. Most people will respond to one or all of these:

  • Achievement. Success measured against a target
  • Recognition/praise. Knowing that others are aware of and appreciate their achievements
  • Responsibility. Being able to set objectives and being given new means to achieve them, like training
  • Personal growth. Continually learning and upgrading skills

Find ways to track and monitor successes. Record individual targets reached as well as things like punctuality, attendance levels and length of service. Something as simple as a 100% attendance certificate or a small recognition of service anniversaries can be really appreciated.

What do High Performing teams focus on?

Our research has shown the following characteristics of teams that consistently Outperform:

  1. People are involved in designing the approach to reward. It's flexible, tailored and meets individual needs and motivations.
  2. There's a culture of recognition. People feel confident that individual and team achievements are consistently recognised and encouraged. 
  3. It gets results. In the best teams everyone can see that higher levels of performance equals greater levels or financial or non-financial reward.

Rewarding excellence: ideas for employee reward

From certificates to social functions, direct verbal praise to award ceremonies, there are lots of ways to reward your people when they achieve something special. You’ll need to tailor each reward so that it’s suitable for the level of achievement. Consider incorporating some or all of the following into your organisation or team and the type of successes each might recognise:

  • Direct verbal praise
  • Peer recognition
  • Outings, social functions, outdoor activities or meals
  • Certificates or plaques
  • Special award event
  • Tickets to events
  • Time off
  • Letter of recognition or personal call from higher management
  • Additional development opportunities or new tools
  • Encouraging and distributing direct customer compliments about staff
  • Press release sent out to local news and trade publications
     

Planning when and how to give recognition is crucial – otherwise it just won’t happen. Think through what you want to do and map out how you’ll make it happen. Involve the wider team in putting your plans into action if it helps – just be sure that if you have committed to a rewards programme, you deliver it.

Don’t forget to give recognition to your peers and superiors too and share your ideas and experiences with them.