While the vast majority of companies have some kind of employee recognition program in place, from cash bonuses to awards, not all of them are equally effective. The most successful ones tend to be tied to the company’s values and culture. They’re not just about giving something to an employee who’s done well — they create a bond between the employee and the company. Some companies have changed their tactics with employee recognition, seeking out new ways to keep employees engaged.
Disney has over 180 employee recognition programs. At least one is unique to the company. It’s named after Fred, a longtime employee who exemplifies the qualities the company values, like dependability and friendliness. Every year, he makes plaques for winners of the Spirit of Fred Award. And he even makes bronze statuettes of the company’s most iconic character, Mickey Mouse, for the winners of the Lifetime Fred Award.
The Internet discounter wasn’t satisfied with the traditional ways of showing employees they’d done well, according to Entrepreneur magazine. For every year of service, employees receive a bright green Adidas jacket. They’re allowed to customize the jacket with a nickname or other fun tidbit. Creativity is rewarded in a similar way at Influence & Co., which awards employees using a professional wrestling-style championship belt.
The tech company decided that one day a year was simply not enough to recognize all the great things their employees do. That’s why they made every day Employee Recognition Day, according to the company’s blog. They host fun events throughout the year and use a peer-to-peer recognition tool. The tool allows employees to give each other shout-outs that can later be converted into prizes. The program’s been a success, with employees letting each other know about a job well done 35 times a day.
The online retailer is encouraging employees to recognize each other’s hard work through incentives, according to the company’s website. The program allows employees to give each other $50 for going above and beyond. This is just one of a variety of programs they offer. One is the Zollar Program, which allows employees to rack up points on a gift card that can be used to buy items like gym bags, water bottles, and desk fans. Producers Assistance has also run a similar gift card program that many of its employees have participated in.
Are you doing enough to show employees they’ve done a great job? Think about how you can link your company’s strategy and values to a successful employee recognition program.