Peer to peer recognition matters. We’re an approval hungry society – just think about the buzz you get when a post is ‘liked’ on social media. That’s a pretty good starting point for explaining why peer to peer recognition should be part of your employee recognition programme. But there are plenty of other good reasons too.

Peer to peer recognition is regular

Gallup research shows that productive and engaged employees get regular recognition at least every seven days. But today’s overburdened managers often struggle to manage that. Recognition becomes another job on their very long tick list and that becomes a bottleneck to engagement.

Peer-to-peer recognition increases the number of individuals who have the ability to recognise. It empowers every employee to be part of the process. Give your employees a simple intuitive employee recognition platform and they’ll provide frequent peer to peer recognition on an ongoing basis.

Peer to peer recognition is high quality recognition

Your manager has one perspective. Your manager combined with everyone else you work with means a far better range of perspectives about the contributions you’re making. The quality of recognition improves as it’s given by people who continually see what you’re doing – not just the outcome on its own. That makes it far more significant for the recipient. Your peers know the skill, time and effort involved and the public validation of that is a big boost to motivation levels.

Peer to peer recognition builds relationships

Political scientist Robert D. Putnam, author of ‘Bowling Alone’, said ‘Many studies have shown that social connections with co-workers are a strong predictor – some would say the single predictor – of job satisfaction.’ Gallup’s Q12 items that measure employee engagement and corresponding employee needs highlight the importance of strong relationships – ‘I have a best friend at work’. It probably won’t turn all your colleagues into best friends but the regular positive communication that comes from peer to peer recognition helps develop trust and relationships. That leads to greater engagement and camaraderie – and camaraderie is a major driver of ‘going the extra mile’.

Peer to peer recognition increases loyalty

… not just to each other but to the organisation too. If employees feel their efforts matter and are making a difference, they’ll be more inclined to stay. The same goes for employees who feel a sense of attachment to their colleagues.

Peer to peer recognition lets people know how they’ve contributed

Knowing we’ve helped others increases our motivation. But so does knowing exactly how we’ve helped. Peer to peer recognition isn’t only good news for motivation levels; it also provides clear specific feedback about the kinds of behaviours that are valued and beneficial to the company. And that continually reinforces the desired culture.

Peer to peer recognition is resource effective

Organisations need a great return on every investment. Using peer to peer recognition as a cornerstone of your employee recognition programme does exactly that. Recognition platforms are far less expensive than traditional monetary reward programmes, impact on a high number of employees and are potentially more effective in engaging and motivating employees than traditional reward incentives.

Giving can be greater than receiving

There’s one other major reason why peer to peer recognition needs to be part of your employee recognition programme. Research suggests there’s a big intrinsic benefit to be had in being the person giving the recognition as well as receiving it. One recognition act. Two people benefiting as a result. Replicated across the whole company.

That has to be worth thinking about so here’s some more research to help you do exactly that…

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