Recognition…Hoping it’s not a dying art!

Publication 12, Issue 6

Recognize your staff before they submit their resignation letter!

It wasn’t that long ago when a dear friend of mine, Todd, submitted his resignation to his long-time employer.  He had been courted by a competitor, and it felt good!  The competitor wanted him “for the value he could bring to the position and for his character and integrity in the industry.”

He was offered a great job (more money & bigger title – didn’t hurt) and he accepted it and told his new employer when he was able to start.  Todd struggled with telling his current employer that he was leaving; he really liked the firm and thought he was doing a good job, although his boss hadn’t said so in a while, so he felt it was time to move on.

Then something happened that he never thought would have happened…when he handed in his resignation, his boss sprang into action!  The next thing Todd knew, he was in his boss’ office, talking about future job opportunities, the value that he brought to the organization and how well-liked and appreciated he was to the team and the business!  Todd hadn’t received any of this feedback until he submitted his resignation!!!  You know where this is going…

Some people leave for money and/or a better opportunity – but most leave because they think or feel undervalued, underutilized, not appreciated or just plain “not recognized!”  Left up to their own devices, staff will make up the feedback if they haven’t received any and worse yet, they may be wrong!

I know it’s hard for managers to constantly “recognize” their staff for the job they do, but it’s super-important not to forget to do so.  Let’s face it, we all like to be recognized in some form or fashion.  For example, saying “appreciate your helping out,” “couldn’t have done it without you,” “you really know how to make things happen,” “you are an expert in your field, glad you are on the team!” goes a long way.  And how long does it take to say something like that?

Recognition means something different to each Playground Personality© – so, while it’s not easy to recognize everybody all the time, here are some ideas (in addition to the ones above) that you can implement today!

Peacemaker – acknowledge him/her personally and timely.  A simple “thank you” might be all you need to say!  Other ideas:  send a handwritten note or email, acknowledging him/her personally and saying that you appreciate his/her contributions to the organization, project, etc.

Organizer – acknowledge their work, upfront – a little different than the Peacemaker who likes to be acknowledged personally. Thank him/her for a job well done or a task that got accomplished in a short amount of time.

Revolutionary – celebrate the team wins; make it fun and don’t forget to participate with them!  Buy pizza for lunch, have an ice cream social, etc.  Bring the team together and “celebrate” with them – that’s what matters to the Revolutionary!

Steamroller – offer a memento, if the accomplishment is big!  Something that he/she can frame or put on his/her desk – it’s the really “big” things that Steamrollers want to be recognized for!

So don’t wait…make a commitment today to recognize your staff/team more frequently and more purposefully!   Don’t wait until it’s too late!

PS – Todd stayed with this long-time employer,  He got a great “new” job, the money and title to go along with it – it worked out for everyone in the end!  Thankfully!

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