Anshul Sharan

How HR and Business Leaders can develop a strategy for recognizing and rewarding employees | Anshul Sharan | Co-Founder & CEO | Elever

Anshul SharanWe hear about a leader’s story in the news most of the time. Yes, they are essential. However, I believe employees play an equally important role in the success of any company. Therefore, it’s critical to have a robust and objective reward and recognition program for the employees.

Why is it important?

Having a rewards and recognition program helps increase employee engagement, leading to many benefits for the company:

a) Boost motivation: Having an objective program helps improve the morale of the employees, which will help employees focus on their work and maintain a positive attitude. It further helps in improving collaboration among colleagues. Getting recognition for an initiative or a reward for performance will foster self-motivation
to perform continuously. It further helps make an employee satisfied at their workplace, which is highly critical to their well-being.

b) Increase productivity: Employees generally focus on their work when their work is not only recognized but also rewarded. It instils a sense of achievement and pride, which motivates them to work efficiently and remain engaged. For some, it also gives them a sense of empowerment, which ensures that people finish their work in time.

c) Improve employee retention: Satisfied, engaged employees are more likely to stick around. In addition, employees prefer to work more in those companies that value them and recognize their contributions with tangible actions. Incorporating a rewards and recognition program is the kind of action that will retain more employees, contributing to the long-term success and growth of the company.

d) Create a positive workplace: Lastly, but most importantly, having an objective reward and recognition program ensures people are motivated and more positive. In turn, this helps create a positive atmosphere within their team, and slowly it spreads across the company. A company with engaged, satisfied, enthusiastic, and cheerful employees ensures that the company is a great place to work.

How to build one?

Now, we understand the important of a recognition and rewards program, but its equally important to build a right one by practicing the following:

1) Be objective: It’s very important to make the program objective. Objectivity ensures that everyone is on the fairground, which will provide a friendly competition resulting in a positive atmosphere. Without objectivity, employees don’t have the motivation to perform, leading to a negative atmosphere resulting in higher attrition. Further, a company will be left with only those people who could get rewards/recognition because of those unobjective gaps.

2) Focus on recognition and rewards equally: While most companies focus on rewards, designing a recognition program is equally important. Recognition does not mean just rewards but includes appreciation, public mentions, etc. Also,
recognition is not meant for at the end of the year during the appraisal cycle. Instead, recognition should be nurtured day in and day out. By recognizing wins or initiatives, you are sending a direct message that they matter to you and the company. It makes employees satisfied with their work, and they feel that the company values them.

3) Remain pragmatic: Being pragmatic is the mantra to getting a successful recognition and rewards program. It’s crucial to understand an employee’s needs and wants, and the program should ensure such inputs are taken care of while designing. Equally important is to keep on tap of industry trends and make suitable changes. However, in the end, one needs to ensure that the program is cost-effective, as the company needs to be sustainable.

Focus on building an objective and pragmatic rewards and recognition program and reap the rewards of having highly engaged, motivated, and enthusiastic employees.