Beyond trinkets and trash

Transforming recognition into a strategic change effort
By Sue Nador
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 06/17/2002

Recognition programs are getting a face-lift across Canada as organizations acknowledge the need for a more strategic approach to rewards and motivation.

Traditional programs such as service awards at the annual firm dinner, or what has been referred to as trinkets and trash celebrations, fall short of adding value. At the same time, meaningful recognition is a top employee need, employee retention is a top CEO priority, and high employee performance is an over-riding business imperative.

While some organizations are developing innovative programs, many others are not achieving a sufficient return on their investment in recognition programs, or are sending confused messages to the workforce about organization priorities, values and desired employee behaviours. Given the potential of recognition programs to promote high performance and build a desired culture, careful consideration must be given to design and implementation. Here are three tips for building a recognition program that achieves results.