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'Thank You' Goes a Long Way
By: Janet Kalandranis
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It’s time to update those legacy systems. No, not the IT infrastructure or the account practices, but the idea that a "thank you" is based on tenure instead of hard work. It’s interesting to think that many companies still have rewards programs from their initial days that focus on the number of years at the company passing by the opportunity to reward really great work. And just to note, those tchotchkes probably aren’t helping the cause.  

Employees are looking to be recognized for specific contributions made in their current role in order to elevate the way they are perceived. In a recent Forbes study, it was found that there is a direct correlation for brands that recognize their employees and their turnover rate. Those companies that create well thought-out recognition programs and publicized to their associates are also those that see lower turnover rate. Just think how much a thank you could be worth now.

When looking to create recognition programs, companies want to take the time to establish some ground rules that not only benefit the employee but also have a positive impact on the entire company. These best practices include recognition that is tied to a specific result or behavior. So rethink “employee of the month,” and attach these to specific outstanding achievements. Employees also want recognition to come from peers as opposed to Senior Management — if co-workers are impressed, that means something significant to associates. And communicating these programs and thanks are very important. Make recognition frequent, share the stories to better enable all employees, and tie them to overall company goals.

Brands that are able to recognize in a beneficial and lasting way are more apt to keep employees for longer term. It’s not the pen on the ten-year anniversary that engages employees, but the idea that they are consistently challenged and recognized for achieving success.

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About the Author
Janet Kalandranis is here to give you all the little brand thoughts that run through her head with a little dash of spice. Find her online here.
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