I recently received this question from Vijender B. via my blog:

“How important is this for the company to have their employees motivated in terms of their work related issues and moral support? How important do you consider the employees’ issues are in this recession phase, specially in Ireland’s economy, where people are being redundant because most of the global and SMEs [small and medium-sized enterprises] have made up their mind that they do not need employees but employees need companies instead. Globoforce, as has been stated by your company officers, is in the ‘thank you’ business, do you think it is in this business because it’s the nature of the company and should other companies also perform this at some extent?”

Vijender questions the importance of employee morale issues in this recession, especially in an environment where “employees need companies.” I would argue your people are your most important competitive advantage – in any economy. Now more than ever you need to keep your team focused on performing against company goals, critically, with your company and not with your competitors. High caliber employees will always have options in the job market; many are till being actively recruited. I spoke to this just a few months ago, citing an AchieveGlobal study showing 23% of workers expect to leave their current positions – a shockingly high number considering many short-sighted managers think their employees will just sit tight out of recession fears.

As to being in the “thank you” business – that’s what we do. We are committed to telling and showing our employees how greatly we value them and their contributions through direct, frequent and timely appreciation of their efforts that help us succeed. We help foster a culture of appreciation in their organizations through Global Strategic Recognition programs built on best practices of executive leadership, global strategy, values-based recognition, opportunity for all to participate and rewards of choice.

As cited in my last post on the latest market research and similar results from Hay Group and WorldatWork of companies plan to increase their focus on the motivational value of reward programs, organizations wishing to thrive in the recession and win when the upturn comes are continuing to invest in “thank you.”