Companies large and small can benefit from employee recognition programs. These programs tend to boost morale, and can inspire healthy competition and excitement among workers. Trophies and prizes can be dispersed once or twice a year, or become a monthly event depending on the size of the company.

How to Choose Your Winners

There are a few different ways to go about recognizing an employee for their achievement. Some companies dispense awards to employees who have met certain milestones, achieved high sale numbers, or to those who have demonstrated stellar customer service.

Many others choose to recognize an employee who has shown a great example in working in a way consistent with the company values and culture.

These are two well-known methods of selecting employees to award, but there are pros and cons to each.

In the first method you may benefit from having objective methods of measurement, but you may also have the same employees win all the time which may not be good for morale. In the second method you may be able to think outside the box a bit to reward employees who are knowledgeable, kind and helpful.

However as the selection committee is usually rather small you may overlook those employees who have gone above and beyond in the company, but are doing so in out-of-the-box ways or operating under the radar.

Research has shown that we tend to overlook behavior that we are not familiar with, or that is not consistent with our own ingrained social culture and morals. This presents a problem in the way that employees are often chosen for recognition.

A Unique Option to Awarding Employees

Consider a third option, which is to allow everyone in your company the chance to vote, or bring to your attention, those employees that are worthy of recognition. This allows the unique experiences of everyone in your company to come into play when it comes to rewarding those who have demonstrated the true spirit of your company.

Organizations are becoming more diverse every day, which brings tremendous opportunities to the workplace in the form of new ideas and new ways of doing things. It’s easy for a traditional organization to take a top-down approach and continue to operate in the way they always have, but in doing so they miss out on the unique ideas and insights born from the increasingly diverse perspectives of their employees.

A social recognition awards program is one easy step your organization can take to improving the diversity of your organization, and learning from those who work for you.

So whether the recognition comes in the form of a gift certificate, a plaque, or custom crystal award, you can be sure that your recognition program is honoring the uniqueness of your company. Even better if your award comes with a gift certificate to a nearby favorite restaurant! Get creative and think of something that your employees will really appreciate.