February is a great time to get strategic about employee recognition.
By mid-February, many people are tired of winter. Snow is no longer new. The holiday season is over. Short days and grey skies wear on many employees. Even if snow days don’t keep your employees away from the office – winter blues can hit productivity and ultimately employee engagement.
How do you keep employees energized and productive mid-winter? Look to your employee engagement power tool: employee recognition. Everyone likes to know that their hard work is seen – and that small recognition can give a big boost to engagement.
The benefit is long term. Recognition also boosts the four pillars of an enriched employee experience: connection, meaning, impact and appreciation. Here are four tips for using recognition to combat the blues.
Four Tips for Using Employee Recognition to Combat Winter Blues
- Recognize Employees for Everyday Impact. The newspaper covers the firefighter who rushes into a building to save the residents. But what about the resident who goes around cleaning up fire hazards so the building doesn’t burn in the first place? Or the fire marshall who designed the sprinkler system that puts a fire out before that?Your employees do important work every single day. Sending a specific piece of recognition to let them know you see it boosts their motivation to do more of it.
- Valentine’s Appreciation Party. Getting appreciation is powerful, but giving can be even more rewarding. Use Valentine’s Day as an excuse for employees to show their appreciation of one another. Assign each employee someone to recognize (ideally someone who they don’t ordinarily work with) and encourage them to do something personal – a card, a heartfelt thought, or something more creative.Go public with a party, or keep it quiet with a simple “secret Valentines” event. Either way, taking time to show appreciation builds it into your culture. And Valentine’s Day is a great excuse.
- Build Meaning with Core Value Recognition. Meaning matters to employees. One study showed that 90% of millennials believe that giving back at work is critical. But giving back doesn’t always have to be charitable. Showing how an employee’s work supports key corporate values also offers a sense of purpose. That sense of purpose goes a long way to being more productive in those long February days.
- Connect Employees with Peer-to-Peer Employee Recognition. If an employee is spending time looking for things that their coworkers are doing well,they’re more likely to connect and learn from each other. The whole team performs better. Two studies back this up. One academic study of what happens with pro-social (i.e., giving back) bonuses, showed that when employees are given a bonus to share with coworkers – team performance goes up.
February can be a tough month for employee performance. But building employee recognition into the month can keep performance high and teams moving forward.
Kazoo is the employee experience platform powered by the science of motivation and the mission of improving the lives of employees everywhere, one company at a time. Founded in 2013, Kazoo grows company culture and improves bottom-line performance metrics through its robust engagement platform that delivers recognition, rewards, incentives, and team insights. Named to Entrepreneur Magazine’s list of Best Company Cultures in 2017, the Austin-based SaaS company and its technology platform are built on the four pillars of employee experience: connection, meaning, impact, and appreciation. To request a demo, visit info.kazoohr.com/demo-request.