By Jayanth Narayan
We recently decided to undertake an experiment with one of our clients to measure the direct impact of Recognition education on the usage of the Recognition program we had implemented in the company. The primary driver behind the experiment was to improve the usage of the Recognition components – specifically the Pure Recognition (Thank You Cards), Spot Awards (worth Rs.500) and a nomination based Award (both individual and team based).
We had divided the organization into 10 logical groups (based on Business units, departments), identified the usage of these Recognition components over the previous 4 month period. We then scheduled Recognition Education sessions for people managers in each of these 10 groups over a 4 week period. The session was a short 60 minute high impact presentation “Real Leadership using Real Recognition” and focused on sensitizing managers why Recognition is critical for the employees they manage and what is the RoI they would get for the effort in Recognizing their employees. We then measured the Recognition activities within each group for a period of 8 weeks post the 60 minute Recognition Education session. The % monthly increase range in usage in each of the 10 groups was the following:
1) Nomination Based Awards: 5-25%
2) Spot Awards: 24-44%
3) Thank You Cards: 30-75%
Clearly the % increases were significant (of course some of the numbers are very high because of the really poor usage within the groups earlier). The data point that was most impactful to me was the % increase in Thank You Cards being given. The education had helped people managers understand that giving someone a “Thank You” Card without any monetary value attached or a tangible gift associated, could still be very meaningful if done in the right manner with the right intent. The company is now on its path towards creating a strong Recognition culture – the key would be to sustain the momentum created and ensure that the usage levels stay where they are currently.
I head Rideau Recognition Solutions’ Asia-Pacific division, Rideau India. Rideau is the leader in online recognition solutions to keep employees engaged and productive. I have been involved in the Business Process & IT outsourcing industry for the last 12 years and hold an MBA in HR from XLRI, Jamshedpur and a bachelor’s degree in Engineering from BITS, Pilani. I have an extremely strong interest and passion for the art and science of Employee Recognition and will be taking great pleasure in sharing and exchanging information on how recognition and relationships can impact the workplace, particularly in India and the surrounding regions.