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Recognition in The Real World
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Explainer – Social Recognition

Posted By David Layman, Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Why Social Recognition leads to a better organization.

Want to engage employees in your corporate culture.

Consider social recognition. Social Recognition is an outstanding tool for employee engagement. Greater employee engagement leads to increased productivity, better retention of high performing employees and a more profitable business.

Social Recognition works by creating an environment and providing tools for employees to interact with each other in a positive way, and for managers to give positive reinforcement to their team members. So, why is it important? Because it helps employees connect to their peers, their managers and to their company. It is not just important, it’s critical for employees to feel appreciated for their work. This type of connection directly affects their productivity, as well as their desire to perform at a higher level and to stay a part of the company for the long term.

Business owners or executives who are only looking at success in terms of dollars are doing so at their peril. Sure, the expectation and need of the employer is still for the employee to be productive. But it’s foolish to think “isn’t a paycheck enough?” The key is that employees want to know that they are appreciated for a job well done.

Happier = Productive.

Both studies and anecdotes confirm that people work for people they like. The old adage says “people don’t leave companies, they leave managers.” By the same logic, people leave managers they don’t like.

Studies have also shown that appreciation leads to greater productivity.

A 2007-2008 Global Workforce Study by Towers Perrin surveyed 90,000 employees in 18 countries on engagement. Comparing the survey results with the companies’ financial data, those organizations with high employee engagement had a 19% increase in operating income and a 28% increase in earnings per share over a 12-month period.

RPI Standards on Recognition.

If you are new to recognition, and to the recognition industry (wait, there’s an industry?), it might be a little overwhelming to figure out where to start.

RPI has set out a list of Best Practice Standards® that gives an overview for setting up a successful recognition program. At the top of the list is a standard for recognition strategy which relates directly to doing social recognition.

This first standard points out that a recognition program should have a Three Dimensional Approach, which includes Day-to-Day Recognition, Informal Recognition and Formal Recognition. Social recognition programs and platforms can be used in all three, but especially in performing Day-to-Day recognition, as it facilitates frequent and ongoing recognition with quick notes or posts from managers or peers for a job well done. These posts can be private or public and can have reward points attached to them.

These social recognition platforms are most effective with executive level buy-in. Encouragement from the CEO or C-Suite for managers and employees to consistently use the social recognition platform ensures greater participation across the company and greater success.

Social recognition is only one part of a successful company recognition program, but it’s quickly becoming one of the most popular parts, as well as one of the easiest to use and administer. To learn more about Social Recognition strategy, you can start with RPI's Best Practice Standards® and contact RPI with any additional questions.

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