The Surprising Non-Financial Way to Motivate Employees
Job satisfaction is critical to retaining talented employees and requires more than just the right amount of cash. Smart businesses have discovered what research is proving – that recognition is the key to happy workplaces that motivate employees.
It seems money really can’t buy happiness when it comes to staff satisfaction, and happiness is what will motivate employees and make them more loyal and productive. While money is important, and market rate compensation will attract top talent, other motivators are needed to keep them happily working for you. The surprising winner in the happiness stakes turns out to be a culture of recognition and reward. When employees feel like their contributions are properly acknowledged, they are more engaged, more motivated, and work harder.
Employee recognition programIntroducing an employee recognition program is a simple and effective way to create a culture of gratitude and recognition in your workplace. Don’t just slap together an employee of the month award that rotates among your staff and offers nothing but empty praise. You need to develop a program that is sincere, achievable and valued in your business.
Getting startedTo begin you will need to decide what you should reward. There are two types of activity that should be recognised in the workplace: performance and behaviour. Performance is easy to spot: have employees met targets, KPIs or deadlines? Did a particular project result in better than anticipated revenue or outcomes? For behaviour, you’ll need to identify what is important to your business, perhaps someone who continually encourages others, or who comes up with new ideas, or who is very organised. Having clear and achievable guidelines will make your program inclusive and meaningful. Choose a theme or goal for each month or quarter for staff to focus their efforts on.
How to show your gratitudeA few words of praise can go a long way to encourage employees, and you should foster a culture where peers and managers are comfortable sharing their appreciation on a regular basis. While this will certainly help to boost morale, more is needed to keep employees motivated and striving for excellence. This is where a more formal employee recognition program comes in.
Certificate of appreciationCertificates are a cost-effective way to put your gratitude into a tangible form that can be used on its own or in conjunction with a gift to show appreciation. People value certificates as a means of recognition because they are a permanent reminder of achievement that can be displayed to further motivate the recipient and inspire others.
Certification processCreating certificates is an easy process once you’ve establish your employee recognition program. You can use a template and customise it to your business’ needs, then just print. Managing your certificates in-house means that you can respond quickly to time-sensitive situations, or create as many different awards as you like and change them to meet the changing needs of your business.
Other certificatesWhile empty, non-genuine recognition can be demotivational, humorous or lighthearted awards given in the right spirit at the right time can strengthen the sense of belonging within your business. Balance out your more serious awards periodically with creative ones like “Lunch Expert" for the person who always knows the best places to eat near work, or “Corporate Jargon Award" for the overuse of industry buzzwords, or “Best Office Playlist" for keeping the team pumped with the right music. You can also offer certification for in-house training modules to recognise each employee’s progress, and for reaching milestones like anniversaries with the company.
Certificate paperTraditional specialty papers like parchment or marble finish are perfect for printing certificates. They come in a slightly heavier weight than regular copy paper and can be used in standard inkjet or laser printers. Their light colour and subtle pattern gives text a strong contrast and complements an ornate border and decorative font. Or go for a fun, fresh look with a metallic paper or solid bright colour. Once printed and signed you can complete your certificate by laminating or framing it.
Getting the best out of your workforce can be achieved by building a culture of appreciation without digging into your pockets. When people feel valued they are happier, more motivated and more productive. A simple employee recognition program that rewards performance, behaviour and achievement with a certificate of appreciation is a public demonstration and concrete evidence of an employee’s value.