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Employee Recognition Creative Award Ideas blog

5 Creative Award Ideas for Rockstar Employees


By Hallmark Business Connections | January 13, 2016 | Blog Posts | Engage Employees

For any organization, it’s important to recognize and reward employees who go above and beyond the call of duty. Successful companies have established a culture of recognition that rewards teamwork, milestones, innovation, customer service, and more.

Establishing a culture of recognition means that employees will continually strive for success, since they know their hard work will be rewarded. Employers should remember that effective recognition doesn’t need to break the bank, however. Employees who are engaged and do superior work will have a greater effect on a company’s bottom line, according to Chron.

Take a look at some of our reward ideas for recognizing rockstar employees:

Verbal Rewards

Many employers overlook the most cost-friendly form of recognition: a simple thank you. Try to
thank employees right in the act of high value work, says organization development coach David Haldorsen. Piggyback a simple thank you with an expression of interest in the employee’s career development and willingness to help them reach their goals.

Personalized Rewards

Another reward idea for select employees could be a more flexible schedule. Once employers know individuals can get their work done, and done well, by their own volition, reward them with more of a “hands-off” managerial style. This could mean allowing employees to work from home certain days of the week, or not docking from vacation time if an urgent appointment comes up during the day.

Written Rewards

Even though verbal and personalized rewards are always appreciated, it can make a reward even more special when it’s put into writing. Surprise employees with a handwritten and thoughtful card thanking them for excellent work.

Sending greeting cards to an employee’s home address can have an even bigger impact because it acknowledges that the employee took time away from family to achieve success at work and it thanks the whole family – not just the employee – for the hard work.

Monetary Rewards

When many employees think of recognition, they think of a monetary gift. Instead of giving cash, however, consider the gift of choice, in the form of an electronic gift card redeemable wherever employees choose.

Coupled with a thoughtful message of praise, this reward will be appreciated by honored
employees. Hallmark Business Connections’ recognition awards allow businesses to acknowledge both individual and team-wide achievements with a touch of personalization.

Public Rewards

Another creative award idea for employees is to set up a “Hall of Fame” for high-performing employees. This tactic highlights an individual’s achievements for the whole office to see and incentivizes others to make it into the honored hall.

A different, office-wide recognition idea is a staff appreciation program. Employees receive points for traits that employers encourage. Earned points can then be redeemed for small privileges or prizes that will motivate employees to continue the behavior.

Final Thoughts

There is no one-size-fits-all form of employee recognition; each organization needs to consider the needs of individual employees and determine the appropriate way to reward staff for a job well done.

One thing is for certain: Open communication and frequent recognition can improve employee retention and inspire hard work and dedication. Employers who take the time to recognize exemplary employees will see greater employee engagement and improved performance across the organization. Even a small reward can have a big impact on an employees’ continuing success.

How does your company reward superstar employees? Do you agree with our reward ideas listed above?

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