Organisations that don’t show appreciation for their staff may face higher staff turnover. This problem will become a real issue as the ‘war for talent’ intensifies.

A common concern amongst many SMEs is reward and recognition schemes are too expensive and time consuming. However it doesn’t need to be this way and this article explores several options that reinforce positive behaviour and show appreciation for staff without breaking the bank.

Treat people fairly

Many organisations join in on traditional reward and recognition methods such as ‘employee of the month’. But this can leave some staff feeling unappreciated because they feel it is “their turn”. Managers can also struggle to balance out the rewards over the year.

Give praise

Always ensure you take the time to personally thank employees. Whether by email team meetings, or a one-on-one appraisal. A small gesture of recognition will put staff in an uplifting mood and encourage them to keep up their continuous efforts.

Put incentives in place

If you reward your staff with the ‘employee of the month’ title but with no actual prize, then staff may not feel as encouraged to excel. All it requires are small tokens of appreciation, vouchers or time off work. At Recruitment Genius, for example, our staff love that they are rewarded with national lottery tickets. If staff have something to ‘win’ at the end, it will keep the momentum going. It will also implement a healthy bit of competition.

Find out what staff really want

Do your own research to find out what your staff would really appreciate in return. If they have been working late nights, would they really appreciate the chance to come into work later the next day? Or would they rather be given time off to spend with their families to make up for the nights away at work? Paying attention to what staff are really asking for will make their hard work worth while.

Review rewards every once in a while

Giving the same gift every time an employee excels doesn’t stay a reward for long. It becomes an expectation. Thus leaving staff feeling less valued. That’s why you need to hand out different rewards every so often. That way you will keep momentum and make their efforts worthwhile.

Everyone benefits

By appreciating your employees’ efforts you will see a real benefit for your business. Employees with high self-esteem will do wonders for your company. Staff may feel more inclined to “go the extra mile”, have a heighten level of commitment to the company and strive to meet performance expectations.

However, if you opt out of a reward and recognition scheme then office morale may decrease fast. Unappreciated employees may be less productive at work and may look elsewhere. This could lead to a high rate of staff turnover. Therefore this scheme is important to employees and to the business. The purpose is to help motivate your staff to earn rewards, which ultimately helps you reach your business’s goals.

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