You know recognition is important in keeping employees motivated. But what if your organization has no formal recognition program, or only recognizes boilerplate stuff like service anniversaries?

Don’t despair. You can still promote recognition inside your department or team. Here are some ideas from Bersin & Associates’ annual recognition survey:

1. Plain old thanks
Some 79% of employers surveyed use the power of Thank You – in a note, face-to-face, or in front of the person’s peers.

2. Events
Things like dinners or lunchtime pizza parties are used by 78% of employers. Key: Be explicit about what the party is recognizing – department, team or individual accomplishment.

3. Employee-generated awards
Have a few enthusiastic employees design awards for Most Conscientious, Most Helpful, etc., and let people nominate each other. Some 56% of employers have employees participate in the recognition award process.

4. Personalized gifts
Instead of – or in addition to – gift cards, try giving books or music by authors or artists the recognized person particularly likes.


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