Everyone likes to be recognized for their efforts. Even the most introverted worker appreciates some sort of recognition for their hard work. You don’t always have to make an over-the-top effort to make your employees feel appreciated. Small, meaningful awards are great incentives to motivate them, improve engagement within the team, and make them feel appreciated.
The Impact of Awards on Employees
Performance-based awards have been scientifically proven to improve people’s lives in many areas. It’s more of a psychological impact – recognition helps motivate people and make them feel valued. When people feel valuable, they want to do better…to be better. This motivation doesn’t apply only to the work environment- you’ll see improvements in other areas of the employee’s life.
It’s been shown that even an employee’s health improves when recognized for their contributions to the job. They may exercise more, eat healthier, and even get more rest to perform better. Their mental health is improved – studies show it improves learning and self-efficacy when employees are rewarded for doing a great job.
People are happier when they feel like they matter. That’s what awards do – they make people feel important. When people feel good about themselves, they perform better, leading to the next point – the benefits the business gains from awarding employees.
Business Benefits of Awarding Employees
One of the most significant benefits a business can gain from rewarding employees is increased productivity, which increases profits. Studies have shown that employees who receive meaningful incentives and outstanding leadership tend to be more loyal and productive for their companies. They feel better about themselves (as discussed in the previous section), which makes them care more about their job. Make your employees feel great, and they’ll increase your bottom line.
Another significant benefit is recruiting and retaining top talent. Finding the diamond in the rough of a pool of applicants can sometimes feel like winning the lottery – if you can convince them to work for your company. Among other attractive qualities of a company, knowing they’ll get the recognition they deserve for doing their job well can push them to your side of the fence. Plus, you can enjoy a lower turnover rate once you recruit them because they’ll be more inclined to stay.
A third benefit is an improved company culture. Having a positive and efficient company culture is essential to the success of a business. It helps to foster creativity and communication and encourages everyone to work as a team. A positive company culture breaks down barriers, cements employees’ confidence in the company, and improves relationships between managers and employees. Awards strengthen this culture through all the positive impacts they have on employees. Happy employees keep the company culture strong.
Effective Awards for Employee Recognition
Awards for employees can take many forms. It’s no secret that monetary rewards are a big motivator. However, money isn’t the only reward you can give. Studies show that non-monetary rewards can be just as effective. The reason for this is scientific – the hippocampus, the brain’s reward center, is stimulated by all types of recognition. As stated before, it’s a psychological impact, so stimulating this pleasure center in the brain can be achieved with awards such as:
- Extra time off
- Trophies and plaques
- Being the boss for a day
- Verbal recognition
- A small gift or token of appreciation
- Fun company events/activities
The point is to make your employees feel valued. Even the smallest gesture can achieve this goal. To make the award even more impactful, you can give the employee the award in front of the rest of the company to encourage others to work for their own awards.
Implement an Award System Today
If your company doesn’t already have an awards system in place for employees, don’t hesitate to implement one right away. It’s scientifically proven that awards can improve employees’ engagement and productivity by motivating them to do their best. In return, your company will benefit from such a small investment. You could start by simply saying, “Thank you.” It only gets better from there.