Why Your Business Needs Employee Recognition

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How often does your business recognize the achievements of its employees? Not every business has the financial capacity to formally recognize their personnel, so on a smaller scale, how often do you, as a business-owner, make a point of offering praise to your people?

If you can’t remember the last time you shared your pleasure at an employee’s performance, perhaps it’s time you considered the importance of appreciating employees for a job well done, not only to keep your employees happy but to ensure continued performance and motivation.

Why is appreciation so important? Ultimately, it is a fundamental human need. By confirming your appreciation of someone’s work or their contributions to your company, you are acknowledging their value to you and the overall vision of your business. When people feel valued, their job satisfaction increases, as well as their motivation to continue to produce good work.

So how do you offer recognition? You have to find tactics that work for you – some business-owners will make recognition a private conversation with their employee, or choose to verbalize their achievements in front of the rest of the team. Others might choose to work their praise into everyday conversation, especially if the employee would not want to be recognized in a public or formal setting. Delegating more challenging tasks and communicating that good performance helped you make your decision is another way to show recognition of high performers. Others still will make recognition a community initiative by creating office-wide appreciation programs so that employees can recognize each other.

You want your appreciation to be given and received sincerely, so ensure that whatever action accomplishment you are praising is worthy of that praise. You will want to identify opportunities in the workplace where you can offer the recognition that will make the difference for your employees, such as:

  • The completion of an important project or task
  • Feedback from a customer or client about great service
  • Going above and beyond expectations
  • Being a positive influence on the work environment
  • Being a consistent role model for others
  • Taking initiative to learn more and improve skills

How do you show appreciation in the workplace? When you’re on the receiving end of recognition by a superior or colleague, how does that affect your work performance and overall experience? I look forward to your thoughts below!

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What’s the difference between managing and coaching?

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In the world of business, I’ve noticed that the term “managing” and “coaching” are often mistakenly interchanged, especially in more informal settings between two parties in the workplace. So what is the difference between these two roles, and are we channeling our managing skills when we should be coaching and vice-versa?

When we think of the word coach, we might initially picture a sports coach- energetic, passionate and shouting encouragement from the sidelines. How does this differ from our perception of a manager? Perhaps we associate a manager with a work setting, and an exchange of instructions or expectations between a senior individual and his or her direct report.

While the roles often become blended in the workplace, what are some of the key differences between a manager and a coach?

  • Coaching requires relationship development: In order to be an effective coach, a relationship of trust, respect and interest in the others’ success is required between two individuals.
  • Managing is directive, coaching is teaching: A coach provides tools and skills to assist the individual achieve the outcome. A coach will allow the individual to make decisions, cultivate their creativity and learn by doing. A manager provides instructions and monitors performance.
  • Managing is often task-oriented and individuals perform their tasks to meet specific project outcomes; Coaching is long-term and involves supporting already high-functioning people to achieve both the goals of the project and improve their individual skills

There is nothing inherently better or worse than being more of a manager or a coach, however, you will find that different situations call upon you to apply qualities that are specific to one role or the other and being aware of when it is best to coach or to manage is a skill on its own.

When to manage:

  • A crisis or high-stress situation: Managing would be best employed in a situation where a specific outcome needs to be realized and employees or colleagues may require direction instruction and follow-up.
  • Individual who is learning a new role and still developing skills: More hands-on management is required for new employees in order for them to understand the workplace culture and a manager’s expectations for performance.

When to coach:

  • High functioning work team: High functioning individuals already know the expectations of their roles and are competent performers. They require support and vision from their coach and they are motivated to perform their best because they have the trust of their coach.
  • When mistakes can lead to constructive learning: When the situation allows you to take risks, a coach will allow their employees to employ trial-and-error tactics and potentially make mistakes to discover the best way to accomplish something. This ultimately leads to greater learning, understanding and ownership over a project.
  • *Most of the time: As a coach, you are encouraging initiative, learning and the development of a personal style, which not only helps you achieve the goals of your company, but fosters motivation and productivity in the workplace.

Can you identify times when you have been a coach or a manager? What other situations require a more managerial approach? I look forward to your thoughts below.