Recognise This! – You can’t build a Positivity Dominated Workplace by recognising your high performers alone.

Now that Labor Day is behind us, we’re back into the full swing of “normal” daily life. In my world, “normal” can be quite crazy. I have two children, both very active in various sports and activities. I travel a good bit for my work, as does my husband. We live close to extended family and are very involved in our community. We are busy! But we love it.

The Labor Day holiday got me thinking about this more, especially coming back to work and chatting with colleagues about their weekends. My colleague and fellow blogger Lynette Silva mentioned her long weekend was “a whole lot of nothing,” which sounds lovely but is also the complete opposite of my weekend of picnics, cook-outs, sleepovers and family gatherings. If I’m completely honest, however, I love the “busy.”

The same is true for me at work. I’d rather be busy than bored. I love the work I do, and I look for opportunities to help customers spread appreciation and create Positivity Dominated Workplaces. I can function (and even thrive) at a very high level of “busy” for long stretches. But that is certainly not true of everyone. Some people can work intensely within set hours each day, but need to shut down at 5:00. Others can run for long hours during the work week, but are completely unavailable for work on weekends. Acknowledging and allowing for these different work styles and tolerances is also a form of recognition.

This is also a good example of why restricting recognition to the top 10% of high performers is incredibly harmful to creating a culture of recognition. Certainly, these high performers deserve recognition for their exceptional level of work (and they will likely receive more frequent and higher levels of recognition over time), but your “Steady Eddies” also deserve recognition, too. Their consistent efforts are often what make it possible for your star performers to shine. “Hours worked” is a false metric as a reason for recognition. Recognising employees for demonstration of your core values, combined with level of effort, contribution, and results achieved, is the strong foundation for creating a culture of appreciation and a Positivity Dominated Workplace.

What does your work schedule look like? How different are the styles of the people on your team? Does recognition happen more often for “hours worked” or contributions and results?