Applying the 5 Tenets of Strategic Employee Recognition in a Recession

It’s been interesting to me to see our five tenets of global strategic recognition come up time and again in the news and on HR blog sites as the effects of the recession continue to unfold.

For example, in another Ask Christi article in Incentive Magazine, Christi addresses a reader question on how to justify a strong recognition program in the midst of a recession. Christi hits precisely on two of our tenets with her answer:

Tenet 1: Align with Company Values and Objectives
“Recognition professionals must align their recognition programs to their organization's business goals and initiatives. By doing this, executives will see their objectives being accomplished.”

Tenet 2: Executive Sponsorship with Clearly Defined Goals
“Metrics need to be developed and shared regularly with executives that show the tie of return on investment to specific recognition initiatives. With solid figures in hand showing your recognition programs are meeting business objectives, these programs are less likely to be reduced or eliminated. Executives will see the link between employee satisfaction, customer satisfaction and stockholder value. The most fortunate organizations are those that have managers and executives at all levels who appreciate the value that employee recognition and employee engagement brings to the table.”

Monica Ginsberg in an article on managing global teams in Workforce Management highlighted two more tenets when she emphasizes the importance of keeping people motivated and recognizing talent worldwide while remaining sensitive to cultural differences.

Tenet 3: A Clear Global Strategy
“Like all things global, cultural preferences vary when it comes to motivating employees. In the U.S., people generally like to be recognized individually for their successes, while Europeans tend to reward teams for a job well done. Working in Germany, Hewitt’s Peterson singled out an employee for praise. ‘It was not welcome,’ she says. But she finds her recruiting team in India responds well to a combination of both styles. She uses regular monthly conference calls to praise the group and encourages individuals to share best practices.”

Tenet 4: Power of Individual Choice
“Managing employees who work in the same office is challenging enough. But in today’s global economy, it’s often necessary to work with and for people thousands of miles away. So how can an executive keep a global workforce motivated and avoid slipping up at the same time. … Jill Smart, chief human resources officer at Accenture, says that ‘managing with awareness’ generates good will.”

And a Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) article on the importance of peer-to-peer recognition hit our last tenet perfectly. Our CEO, Eric Mosley is quoted in that article on the importance of recognition in a recession:

Tenet 5: Opportunity for All to Participate
“During times of crises and uncertainty, recognition, appreciation and support for friends and colleagues increases dramatically and unlocks something inside us that wants to give and be thankful for each other. Globoforce reported record levels of peer-to-peer employee awards issued in the Fortune 500 companies that use Globoforce recognition programs during the worst part of the downturn in Q4 2008. Caring and concerned people turned to their company's peer-to-peer recognition program as a way to make a connection and appreciate someone around them for their efforts.”

We’ve established these five tenets – our best practice recommendations – based on our work with some the world’s largest and most diverse global organizations. It’s exciting to see the proof of these tenets playing out in these third party sources as well.

What are your best practices for strategic recognition? Share them in comments.

0 comment(s):