Employee Recognition: Why You Should Praise Your Employees More Often

Many millenials were raised with the idea that self-esteem is the key to success. And with the rising number of Millenials making their way into the workforce, the idea of employee recognition is becoming a big trend in HR.

It might seem strange to some to thank their employees for doing something that is technically their job, but letting your employees know that they are valued can do a lot to help keep them happy. The benefits you gain can range from higher productivity, to better employee retention, to great employee branding.

So today, let’s talk a little bit about employee recognition, and a few things to consider when you are giving your employees praise.

  1. Employee recognition doesn’t have to affect budget costs
    You don’t need to set up some kind of program to praise your employees. In fact, setting up some automated recognition program will probably have the opposite effect you want it have. Letting your employees know that they are valued can be as simple as telling them “Thank you,” or “Great job on this project.”
  2. Employee recognition doesn’t always mean a raise or a bonus
    As we just mentioned, employee recognition doesn’t have to affect your budget. While a raise or bonus is great thing, it might not always be the right match, so make sure to assess when and where financial rewards are appropriate.
    Sometimes, employees just want to receive positive feedback. We’re not saying that you shouldn’t give out pay raises or bonuses (they’re both very important), but we are saying that recognition and thanks are very important to a positive work environment. A nice mix of both never hurts.

When giving employees recognition for their work, there are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Be authentic. If you’re going to give your employees recognition, make sure that you mean it. Nothing is worse than coming off as insincere when telling your employee what a great job they are doing.
  • Be specific and in the moment. Randomly letting your employees know you appreciate their work is fine, but try to make sure they know specifically what it is you like about their work. Also, tell them as the work happens. No one wants to feel like an afterthought.
  • Make the praise appropriate. There is no need to praise an employee up and down like there is no tomorrow. If anything, you might look insincere. Make sure your recognition matches the effort and result.
  • Make it a team effort. The big boss shouldn’t be the only one giving out praise, and sometimes, it might not even be possible to recognize everyone. To keep employee efforts from falling through the cracks, give some of the responsibility to managers and team leaders if you aren’t already. This helps keep everything in context.

Although not all problems can be solved by a simple, “Thank you,” the simple act of recognizing your employees for their hard work can go a long ways towards helping your employees feel valued.

So if you aren’t already, get started on getting out and recognizing your employees. The benefits far outweigh the small amount of time it takes to recognize someone for their hard work–and really, there’s no reason not to always let people know when they do a great job.