When I was in high school, there were always “awards” mentioned in the class year book. While some awards were for real accomplishments, others were typically based on one of your real (or perceived) flaws – like your clumsiness, weird hair, or the strange smell the emanated from your gym bag. Some of the less flattering could be:
- Most Likely to Walk into Walls
- Most Irritating Voice Award
- How Can You Possibly Eat that for Lunch Award
- Most Likely to Wear Clothes that are Completely Out of Style
In business, however, the intent of an employee award program is to reinforce the behaviors the company wants to see in its employees…those core values that separate your company from the competition.
At Brightwing, we have several awards: The Employee of the Month (celebrating outstanding accomplishments for the month); The Grinder Award (given for persistence quarterly and annually); the Mentor Award (for being the best in our new hire mentoring program); and the coveted Employee of the Year Award.
Brightwing’s recipient Employee of the Year for 2011 was Doug Zieleniewski, Senior Business Development Manager in our Michigan office. Doug was able to lead his team to not only achieve, but to exceed, their annual goals well in advance of the end of the year. He accomplished this by setting a great example for his team by living the ideals we preach: People/People; Details, Details, Details; Positive Enthusiasm; Persistent; Family Centric; Integrity.
In our careers, as well as other areas of our life, we tend to repeat the behaviors that are positively reinforced. Choose your employee reward categories carefully and be sure to present the awards publically with the appropriate fanfare to get the best results.
What kind of awards does your company present? Share your best ones….or get some ideas HERE on how to create your own award program.
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Author: Karen Melvin, Human Resources Manager
I’ve been in HR management for over 20 years and try to successfully balance my time between my busy career and my awesome family (that includes 8 grandchildren with 3 more on the way). Yes, I’m old, but inside my head I’m still 17, so I kind of have a Kid Rock/Neil Diamond perspective on life.