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The Power of Recognition in Employee Wellbeing: Best Practices

August 25, 2023 |

Today, we’re diving deep into a topic that holds the key to unlocking a world of positivity, productivity, and happiness in your workplace. We’re talking about employee recognition. It’s not just a buzzword; it’s a powerful tool that can transform the way you and your team experience work, ultimately leading to enhanced wellbeing for your employees and your organization. Let’s explore the incredible impact of recognition in a professional setting, why it’s often underestimated, and how to integrate it seamlessly into your organization’s culture.


The Human Need for Recognition: A Socioeconomic Perspective

Imagine this: you’ve just completed a project that demanded your utmost dedication, creativity, and time. You’ve put your heart and soul into it, and when your manager praises your efforts in front of the team, you can’t help but feel a rush of pride and contentment. That’s the magic of recognition at work. From a socioeconomic standpoint, it’s not just about boosting someone’s ego – it’s about acknowledging their contribution and validating their efforts.

Our brains are wired to respond to positive feedback. When we receive recognition, our brain releases dopamine, the “feel-good” neurotransmitter. This not only boosts our mood but also reduces stress levels. It’s a beautiful cycle: positive feedback leads to lower stress, which in turn enhances our overall wellbeing. The effects aren’t just confined to the mind – they radiate through our bodies, fostering a sense of accomplishment that can’t be understated.

Recognition isn’t exclusive to adults; it’s a fundamental building block of personality. Just think about how children light up when they’re praised for their drawings or school performances. This early exposure to recognition shapes their confidence and self-worth. Similarly, as adults, we thrive in environments where our efforts are acknowledged. It solidifies our identity, drives our motivation, and empowers us to excel.


The ‘Free’ Tool We Underestimate

Here’s the thing: employee recognition is a free tool, yet it’s astonishingly underused. A simple “you did a great job here” costs nothing but can yield tremendous results. It’s not about empty flattery; it’s about genuine appreciation. However, this appreciation should be specific and well-timed. Generalized compliments lack impact. To avoid misunderstandings, it’s crucial to draw a clear line between recognition and personal compliments. Comments about appearance, gender, or other private matters have no place in a professional recognition context.


The Ripple Effect on Wellbeing: Individuals and Organizations

Now, let’s unravel how a thoughtful approach to employee recognition can be a game-changer for both individuals and organizations. When employees are consistently recognized for their contributions, they feel valued and seen. This elevates their engagement, job satisfaction, and overall mental health. A study by Gallup found that organizations with higher employee engagement see 21% higher profitability. Recognition doesn’t just make people feel good; it makes good business sense too.

Beyond individuals, the organization as a whole reaps the benefits. A culture of recognition fosters a positive work environment, reduces turnover rates, and attracts top talent. It’s a snowball effect: when employees are happy and fulfilled, they collaborate better, innovate more, and boost the company’s reputation.


Best Practices: Making Recognition a Way of Life

So, how can you ensure that recognition becomes an integral part of your organization’s fabric? It’s time for some best practices!

Embrace Transparency: Make recognition a transparent process. Encourage peers to recognize each other’s efforts and contributions openly.

Implement a Holistic Wellbeing Platform: Enter teroGO – a holistic wellbeing platform that brings employee recognition to a whole new level. Through engaging challenges and programs, employees can work on their personal wellbeing while supporting one another. With features like comments and virtual high-fives, it’s a hub of positivity and camaraderie.

Personalize and Diversify: Recognize diverse achievements. From hitting a project deadline to mentoring a colleague, each accomplishment deserves acknowledgment. Tailor your approach to fit individual preferences, whether it’s public praise or a private note.

Leadership Role Modeling: Leadership sets the tone. When leaders actively recognize their team members, it sends a powerful message that recognition is a core value.

Consistency is Key: Recognition isn’t a one-time event. It’s an ongoing practice. Set up regular check-ins, meetings, or platforms for employees to share their achievements.

Training and Education: Train employees and managers on the art of recognition. Ensure they understand the difference between meaningful recognition and empty compliments.

Remember, it’s the small gestures that often have the most significant impact. A word of appreciation, a virtual high-five, or a sincere “thank you” can create a ripple of positivity that resonates through your organization.

In a world that’s constantly evolving, one thing remains constant: the power of recognition. It’s a force that transcends age, culture, and industry. So, go ahead, integrate these best practices, and watch as your workplace transforms into a hub of appreciation, collaboration, and overall wellbeing. We at teroGO are happy to support you with this important topic – just reach out to us with your questions or input. You’ve got the power to make it happen!


Written by Olivier Kaeser

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