The term recognition can be defined in many different ways. Some define recognition as getting a reward or celebrating a success at work. Other organizations define recognition as earning an incentive for reaching a goal. All of these terms are related to recognition in some way. However, they do not completely define recognition. According to the Recognition Professionals International, formerly the NAER, recognition is:“An after-the-fact display of appreciation or acknowledgement of an individual or team’s desired behavior, effort, or business result that supports the organization’s goals and values.” Recognition is more then simply throwing a party, giving an employee a gift, or saying thank you. It is an acknowledgement that intentionally links employee behavior to corporate goals! A good recognition program includes rewards, awards, incentives, and celebrations. These terms are defined below:Reward: An item given to an individual or team for meeting a pre-determined goal and is sometimes cash-based

Award: An item given to an individual or team to commemorate a specified achievement that is typically non-cash

Incentive: A contingent reward based on achievement of pre-determined performance results within a specific time period

Celebration: A planned or spontaneous event in recognition of individual or team achievement

Recognition programs help organizations in three ways:

  • Recognition programs help companies make more money.
  • Recognition programs keep employees engaged in their work
  • Recognition programs improve employee performance

Recognition makes your company more profitable because employees who are recognized are more engaged in their work. Engaged employees perform at a higher level and give better service. According to John Knotter, author of Culture and Performance, companies that pay attention to employees enjoy exceptional increases to the bottom line when compared to companies that only pay attention to the bottom line. As a result, customers are more satisfied and will continue to do business with your organization.

Additionally, recognition builds a stronger relationship between the manager and the employee. As this relationship grows, employees develop a loyalty to the manager and the organization.

Most importantly, recognition programs help companies make more money.