Recognition & Reward – Above and Beyond Recognition

By Douglas Weinstein
Published on: March 24, 2017

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This is part 3 in a 6 – part series.

You can find Part 1, What is Recognition & Reward, here.

You can find Part 2, Every Day Recognition, here.

In Part 2, we talked about day to day recognition where everyone in the company can be an active participant.  It doesn’t cost anything to say thanks or point out when someone has gone above and beyond the call of duty.  It’s the opposite of taking someone for granted.  And it has a big impact on company morale.

Today, we want to discuss Above and Beyond Recognition.  This type of recognition is for that really extra-special achievement.  And, we’re going to throw some money down as well.  Figure you might award this type of recognition once or twice a year per employee (although for some employees and companies, this type of recognition can be a more regular event).   Here are the major themes we want to keep in mind for Above and Beyond Recognition rewards:

  • Value – the value of the recognition has to match the level of achievement
  • Impact – the recognition has to have impact
  • Personal – make it personal

Let’s break each of these down:

Value.  You want to ensure that these types of recognition events re-enforce your company goals.  So, look at over-the-top sales achievements, great ideas that save the company money, and other achievements that add significantly to your bottom line.  The reward’s value should be commensurate with the value of the achievement, so all employees get motivated to excel based on company-wide goals and aspirations.

Impact.  Think outside the box.  Have some fun with this.  You don’t have to go crazy, but with a little imagination you can create the right kind of buzz a recognition and reward program is supposed to engender.  An impactful reward will get people talking.  Employees will be envious and want to excel themselves so they might stand a chance at getting in on the action.  An impactful reward will sear itself into the brain of the recipient and it will have a lasting effect.

Personal.  The presentation of the reward should be personal and about the person being rewarded.  Get the team together and explain in detail what this great employee has just accomplished for the company.  Explain the personal nature of the reward itself, why “it” was chosen as the reward.  And put some thought into the person presenting the reward.  It doesn’t necessarily have to be the boss, it could be a co-worker.  Make everything about these presentations personal.

Here is an example:

Your Project Manager is a die-hard baseball fan.  So getting those ‘impossible to get’ box seats for opening day because he brought that big job in significantly under budget and ahead of schedule is a big-time recognition and reward statement.   Having the client drop by to say a big “thank-you” is icing on the cake.  Oh, and because we want you to have a great time and not worry about drinking and driving, we’ve hired a car service for the day.  It’s impactful and carries the right value and is highly personal.

So, in closing this part, make sure you keep in mind Value, Impact, and Personal for your Above and Beyond Recognition rewards.

Next up, Part 4 – Career Recognition


Douglas Weinstein

Douglas Weinstein

Doug is the Editor and co-founder of the Technology Insider Group and Technology Designer Magazine. Previously, he was the Executive Director and co-founder of the Elf Foundation, a non-profit organization that created Room of Magic entertainment theaters in children's hospitals across North America.

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